Volunteer Guidelines and Safety Tips

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Volunteer Guidelines: Volunteer crew members should possess the following minimum qualifications:

  • Good common sense
  • Good physical condition, including sight and hearing
  • Mental alertness
  • A sense of responsibility for safety of public and crew
  • Must be at least 14 years of age

Safety Tips

  • Knives, machetes, axes, etc. cannot be carried by crew members.
  • Do not attempt to compact (squeeze) trash sacks to gain room for more trash. Injuries from broken or jagged objects often result from this practice. Fill the sack with what goes in easily, and then get another bag.
  • Park all vehicles clear of the roadway and at least 20 feet from the edge of the pavement.
  • Keep vehicles on same side of the highway as the volunteers.
  • Work on one side of the highway at a time.
  • Car-pool to the site to reduce the number of vehicles.
  • Whenever possible, face oncoming traffic while you work. Be prepared to move out of the way of vehicles in an emergency.
  • Discontinue work in inclement weather, especially in times of reduced visibility and wet roads.
  • Work only during daylight hours.
  • Avoid overexertion and drink plenty of water, especially during the summer months.
  • Post a look-out to be aware of traffic situations and monitor volunteer activities.
  • Have a refresher session on safety awareness each time a crew goes out.
  • Do not cross busy sections of roadway.
  • Do not use headsets, which interfere with hearing oncoming traffic and other potential hazards.

What To Wear

  • Wear light-colored clothing and your safety vest at all times when working on the right-of-way.
  • Wear heavy gloves.
  • Watch your footing. Wear substantial leather shoes or boots with ankle support. Stay off rip-rap and steep slopes.
  • Wear a hat and long sleeves to avoid sunburn. You may wish to use a sunscreen on sunny days.

What To Avoid

  • Do not attempt to remove known or suspected toxic/hazardous substances. Notify the police on the location of such items immediately.
  • DO NOT pick-up discarded syringes or hypodermic needles.
  • Be alert for places where snakes may be located, such as around old logs and in tall grass, and avoid these areas. Be equally alert for stinging insects, especially fire ants.
  • Avoid contact with poison ivy, poison oak, and other noxious weeds.
  • Avoid areas where herbicides were applied that day.
  • Do not attempt to pick-up items on bridges, overpasses. These areas are especially dangerous to pedestrian workers.
  • Stay clear of any moving operations and maintenance/construction activities.
  • Do not enter the roadway or its shoulder areas, paved or unpaved, to pick-up trash.

              Remember: You Are Working In A Dangerous Environment--Be Alert!