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1. It's OKAY to call them "garbage men" or women or people.
Although the politically correct terms are "sanitation engineer" and "waste management professionals," an overwhelming amount of those in the profession (novices and veterans alike) prefer the classic moniker: Garbage Man/Woman.
2. Only 1% of garbage collectors are women.
There are about 116,000 garbage collectors in the U.S., therefore there are still 1000 female collectors as well! I must admit, I don't see it regularly.
3. If your garbage is incriminating, you better believe the police are partnering with your garbage man.
4. Fall is their least favorite season.
Garbage collectors have to deal with weight in highly multiplied volumes when autumn rolls around because wet leaves increase their burden significantly.
5. One person's trash...
Is often another person's treasure. There are a whole lot of things you put at the curb and find yourself utterly shocked they haven't been scooped by a neighbor. You think it's destined for the compactor, but not quite yet. TVs, bikes, vacuums, lamps... these are just some things that are very frequently saved by the garbage collector.
6. Couches and mattresses on the other hand...
These are by far, in a way, the most hated task for garbage collectors. In fact, they talk about it often and compare horror stories when they're at get-togethers or holiday parties; they hate them.
7. Sanitation workers have twice the fatality rates of police officers, and almost seven times the fatality rates of firefighters.
Their jobs are dangerous, no doubt about that. From very heavy machinery, to hygiene issues, to broken glass and needles poking through bags, the garbage collector takes a lot of risks every shift.
8. If you're a garbage collector in Canada, you certainly love the time between mid-February to mid-March because it's Rrrroll up the Rrrrim to Win!
For anyone who doesn't know, during this time, Canadian coffee chain Tim Hortons allows you to roll up the rim of your coffee cup for the chance to win anything from a coffee or a donut to cash prizes or a car! Anyway, at this time of year garbage collectors find a lot of them in the trash as the following photo suggests!
9. Garbage collectors ride the roads in some pretty impressive, very expensive vehicles.
Garbage trucks nowadays are high tech with automated curbside pick-up, motion-activated cameras, alerts to homes that missed their original pick-up time... AND trucks can cost far more than $250,000.
10. Garbage collectors really, really hate it when you cheap out on your bag choice.
Have some consideration. Really? Bags that just burst open, not fair; stay away from the dollar store.
11. Whatever gets flushed ends up in the garbage.
Common misconception: if you flush it, if it's submerged in water, if it disappears, it does just that, it's gone, right? Wrong. At water treatment facilities, anything that isn't, well, water, gets filtered out and then garbage collectors have to come retrieve the bins of waste. So don't use the toilet as your personal disposal for everything.
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