Every week, we bring our trash out to the end of the driveway for it to be picked up by the trash collectors.
Yet, very few of us probably take the time to think about the men and women in those trash collector uniforms and what they’re job really entails.
As we know, trash collectors go from house to house to pick up people’s trash. Yet, there’s a lot more to the job than that.
What’s it really like to work as a trash collector?
Check out this behind the scenes guide to learn what it’s really like to be a trash collector.
What is a Garbage Collector?
First things first, what exactly is a garbage collector?
A garbage collector is someone who collects the trash and either works for a private waste management company or a municipal government. Typically garbage collectors work in pairs, and in addition to picking up waste, they also picked up recycled items and yard debris from residential homes, business centers, and public parks.
Garbage collectors play a major role in keeping our cities and communities clean. If this waste were allowed to build up, it would cause major environmental and health issues.
So, next time you see a garbage collector, be sure to thank them for all of their hard work!
What Does a Garbage Collector Do?
Due to all the heavy lifting they do throughout the day, garbage collectors need to be in pretty good shape.
In addition to lifting heavy bags of garbage, collectors also lift furniture, compost, recycled objects, and other heavy materials. When working in a pair, it’s the job of the driver to navigate through the streets to make sure everyone’s trash gets collected.
Then, it’s the other worker’s job to get out of the truck and attach the garbage containers to the lift. With recycling containers, it’s the job of the garbage collector to go through the recycling bin and remove any inappropriate contents.
Some garbage trucks also have the capacity to pick up an entire dumpster without getting out of their vehicle. To do this, they use large levers to pick up the dumpster and dump the load. The waste is then taken to the appropriate disposal center.
If you’re employed as a garbage collector for a private waste removal service or hauling service, then you’ll need to employ special handling tactics to deal with the toxic waste. Therefore, in order to get this type of job, you’ll need to undergo training in handling hazardous materials.
Garbage collectors are either employed by the city publics waste department or a private waste disposal company. You’ll either be employed to drive or to be the helper who gets the trash into the truck.
As a garbage collector, you’ll be constantly exposed to the weather elements. Whether it’s raining, snowing, or scorching, garbage collectors are required to carry out their work as usual.
Most garbage collectors work in the early hours of the morning, and in addition to interacting with their partner, some also need to occasionally interact with the public.
Personality Type of Garbage Collector
Garbage collecting is a very unique job, and it therefore attracts very unique personality types.
To be a successful garbage collector, you should possess the following personality traits and characteristics:
It’s also important to keep in mind that you won’t have much social interaction as a garbage collector, save for the interaction between you and your partner.
Therefore, you need to be the type of person who can work alone for long periods of time in solitude.
Many people don’t realize this, but working as a garbage collector can actually be quite dangerous.
In fact, it’s ranked as one of the top five most dangerous jobs in America. In addition to dealing with heavy and dangerous equipment on a daily basis, garbage collectors are also exposed to many other dangerous elements including:
Broken glass and syringes
Poor weather conditions
Smoke, dust, and other fumes
Diseases related to solid waste