Legislature to debate sanitation worker safety

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- The Wisconsin Legislature is scheduled to take up a bill designed to protect sanitation workers from reckless drivers who go around stopped garbage trucks.

The bill up for a vote in both the Senate and Assembly would double traffic fines for motorists who drive recklessly around sanitation workers.

Republican sponsor Rep. John Jagler says he introduced the bill after a worker from his district was severely injured in a car crash in January while depositing trash.

The National Solid Wastes Management Association says four to eight collection workers are killed by cars each year while on the job.

Nearly all states have laws that require drivers to give way or slow down for parked police, fire or emergency vehicles with flashing lights. But only Michigan extends that to garbage trucks.

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