At the end of September, Waste Management partnered with the City of Auburn for a food drive to benefit the Auburn Food Bank. Waste Management customers were encouraged to put out non-perishable items on their collection day for Waste Management to pick up. Auburn residents went all in for the fight against hunger, donating almost three tons of food for the Auburn Food Bank. The final total was 5,984.5 pounds.
On the first day of the food drive, Mayor Nancy Backus did a ride along with her waste truck drive, Mike Fingerson. Here is her recount of that experience, as shared in her September 28th weekly update:
A Morning with Waste Management
Waste Management held a food drive this week to benefit the Auburn Food Bank. To kick off the event, bright and early Monday morning, I joined the skilled WM drivers as they began their day. The drivers all exited the shop and approached their trucks at the same time and did the exact same safety check. The brakes, lights, hydraulics and so much more are checked to ensure that the drivers and those they share the road with are safe. As I watched the routine, I was impressed by how well it was choreographed. I took a short video to share with you – keep in mind that the entire safety check took 15-20 minutes.
I had the honor of riding along with Mike Fingerson – who happens to also collect in my neighborhood! We weren’t on that route, but it was certainly interesting talking with Mike about the challenges and the benefits of his job. He has been in this profession for quite a while and is proud of the work that he does. As I stepped into the truck, I was amazed by how much equipment is installed in the cab – and it has dual steering wheels – one on the right side of the cab and one on the left. As we exited the WM yard, Mike was driving from the left side, but as we approached his route, he parked, and we changed sides so that he was able to better see from the right side. The expertise with which Mike used all of the knobs and levers within the cab to extend “the claw” to pick up the waste container and empty it into the bucket on the front of the truck was impressive. After each pick-up, and before he moves to the next container, Mike utilizes the computer screen to note each account and whether there was a container to empty or if there was extra to pick up. That information is used in your utility billing each month. I think we all appreciate that our garbage gets collected each week, but I doubt that we ever really stop to think about what occurs to make that happen. I have a new appreciation!
I hope you were able to participate in the food drive so that the shelves at the Auburn Food Bank can be filled for our community members to access. I’ve said it numerous times – our community takes care of our own!