Gov. Walker signs bill increasing protection for sanitation workers

Published On: Jul 15 2013 11:13:45 AM CDT   Updated On: Jul 16 2013 09:41:44 AM CDT
WATERTOWN, Wis. -

Governor Scott Walker signed Senate Bill 145 into law Monday at Marine Corps League Aero Park in Watertown.

The law increases protection for sanitation workers by doubling the minimum and maximum fines for speeding violations and reckless driving. Current law protects only highway construction and maintenance workers.

"Hopefully, drivers across the state will recognize the risks posed to sanitation workers and slow down to protect them and prevent accidents," Governor Walker said in a statement. "I thank Senator Paul Farrow (R-Pewaukee) and Representative John Jagler (R-Watertown) for their leadership on this bill."

Senate Bill 145 came about after sanitation worker and Marine Corps veteran Mark Friend suffered serious injuries in an accident in January 2013.

"Certainly this is a very welcome statute put into place to again, provide that additional level of safety for our service workers serving our community out there, helping to keep the streets clean," said Matt Harter, Business Development Coordinator of Harter's Quick Cleanup.

Harter says they've had a few close calls, but have not had any accidents to this point.