- Last week, the National Waste & Recycling Association (NWRA) launched a week-long training and awareness initiative to promote awareness and prevention of accidents, fatalities, and injuries related to a big industry issue: truck backing.
- The Stand Down was a success, receiving engagement from 60% of the industry, according to NWRA. In addition to industry support, safety suggestions, and meaningful feedback, the Stand Down yielded significant social media engagement: 26,400 Twitter impressions and 22,300 Facebook impressions an average 200% increase in engagement amongst both platforms.
- NWRA plans to launch two more Safety Stand Downs this year. As planning begins for these next events, the association will continue working with partner association and organizations, hoping to grow participation to at least 70% of the industry.
Coming out for the Stand Down event were NWRA members, regional waste and recycling associations, and the municipal waste community, including California Refuse and Recycling Council, the Oregon Refuse and Recycling Association, the Washington Refuse and Recycling Association, the International Scrap Recycling Institute (ISRI) and the Solid Waste Association of North America (SWANA).
The Stand Down provided tools, guidance and other support to help end backing incidents and help companies bolster their safety training programs, encouraging employee sessions on safe backing; conducting a risk assessment and review of backing policies and procedures; and posting Stand Down information at facilities and on social media sites.
As the backing issue affects many stakeholders in the industry, a high level of participation was an assuring indication that the industry is working together to promote safe practices.
"I thought the Stand Down went very well with our drivers and helpers. The bullet points were right on target with the subject. It was a good reminder on what can happen if you don’t pay attention to what you’re doing," said Dave Massey of Ankeny Sanitation.
James Profit of Montgomery County Solid Waste Services Group echoed this feedback. "We utilized [the information] to update our transfer and haul drivers and our transfer station employees. We look forward to more safety best practices from [NWRA] and SWANA," he said.