Trash Talking; Not That Kind, Trash Crews Stay Safe On The Job


You can’t necessarily call them trash talkers, but they do know what they are talking about when it comes to trash. They also know what they are talking about when it comes to staying safe in bitterly cold temperatures.

Fox 42’s Bill Steckis went on a ride along with a Papillion Sanitation trash crew to see how it prepares for the cold while on the job.

As the crew emptied  containers, it loads up on layers.

“It’s  cold out here,” said Jeremy Brown, Papillion Sanitation, as he reached for a trash can to dump into his truck. He wears layers of clothing to be safe on the job.

“If your ears stay warm and the top of your head stays warm, you are feeling pretty good out there,” said Brown.

Riding on the outside of the truck makes the wind-chill feel even colder from Jose Alvarez.

“I’m wearing long underwear today to keep my body warm today, you know,” said Jose Alvarez, Papillion Sanitation.

Running and keeping active  is the key to staying warm on the job.

“As much as you are running around and doing all the throwing and lifting, your body stays warm doing that just as much as anything.”

When the route we tracked at Fox 42 started Tuesday  morning, the air temperature was just ten degrees. But the wind-chill was below zero.

The National Weather Service says that scenario would take less than a half–hour for frostbite to set in. It’s something Papillion Sanitation takes seriously.

“We have safety meetings every Friday and this week and recently the topics have been cold stress and how to deal with the cold weather including frostbite, hypothermia and things of that nature,” said Alex Shackleton, Papillion Sanitation Supervisor.

Fox 42 Chief Meteorologist  Kevan Ramer said those issues can be avoided by wearing layers of loose–fitting warm clothing, warm outer garments that are hooded, and by wearing a hat because  40%  of body heat can be lost from your head.

He adds wear mittens. They will keep your hands warmer than gloves.

Temperatures are expected to get into the 30’s this week, but keep in mind that at some point in the mornings, the wind-chills will still be below zero.

The American Red Cross urges workers who have to do their job outside in the cold to do it in pairs. It also encourages short breaks to warm up throughout the day.