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New Wisconsin bill to protect collection workers from work injury

Some of this nation's most important jobs are not necessarily the most pretty. One of these jobs is wastewater collection. These men and women work hard to maintain our sanitary sewers and storm drains so that the nation may have cleaner water systems. Unfortunately, laws ensuring the safety of these workers have been lax. However, in order to reduce the work injury rate for these workers, Wisconsin Governor Walker has signed a bill to increase penalties for those who do not slow down for the safety of these workers.

Bill 145 is due to increase protection for collection workers by affecting speeding fines for drivers who speed by the workers. The bill will double both the minimum and maximum fines for speeding and reckless driving. The bill passed in the Senate 32-0.

The bill was championed after a serious work injury occurred. A sanitation worker was badly injured by a car that was speeding where he was working, and he lost his leg as a result of his injuries. Until now, only highway construction and maintenance workers were protected by law.

Sometimes the nations' less pretty jobs get overlooked. This bill will ensure that all highway workers will get the same treatment when it comes to cars driving dangerously in their work zones. However, if any Wisconsin collection worker is injured on the job, like the worker who lost his leg, it is possible that they could file for workers' compensation. A work injury is a serious occurrence that could result in high medical bills and missed wages; a workers' compensation claim can compensate one for that.

Source:, "Wisconsin governor signs bill to protect collection workers," Jennifer Kalish, July 15, 2013

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