PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — There is outrage brewing over illegal trash dumping in one Philadelphia neighborhood, and there’s a major effort to catch the culprits.
Trash bags, cardboard, old furniture, and other debris litter 3rd and Somerville in the Logan neighborhood of North Philadelphia.READ MORE: 'It's Completely Polarized': Political Divide Hard To Ignore In Bucks County As Voters Come Out For Pennsylvania Primary
“There were kids out here actually walking around the trash into oncoming traffic because they were not trying to walk through the filth,” said Terrill Haigler, better known in Philly as “Ya Fav Trashman.”
That’s Ya Fav Trashman. He organized a massive cleanup response on Martin Luther King Day. Volunteers collected 10 tons of trash, but the next day, someone dumped bags of trash all over again.
“It’s infuriating. If I had to use an SAT word, I am flabbergasted because we did so much work. We worked so hard and it’s a slap in the face to the people who spent three hours picking this stuff up,” Haigler said.
And when CBS3 cameras were there nearly a week later, we found even more.
“Look. you have floor tile, this is all construction,” Haigler said.READ MORE: Printer Error Affects Mailed Ballots In Lancaster County, Pennsylvania's 6th Most Populous County
Ya Fav Trashman says incorporating cameras at dumpsites may help deter the illegal dumping. He even started a petition on Change.org.
“Let’s catch the people that are doing this, enforce it but also let’s unnormalize just going into someone’s community and dumping the trash because it’s cheaper to dump here than a regular dump,” Haigler said.
While this will not be a quick fix, the goal is to tackle it one street at a time and hopefully spread more awareness and gain more help from the city.
“Everyone is buying into a clean Philadelphia,” Haigler said. “Everybody is buying into the fact that no matter your zip code, no matter the name on your block, you deserve to live in a clean street.”
The Streets Department sent CBS3 a statement in regards to the illegal dumping issues and cameras.
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“The Streets Department spends millions of dollars annually to address illegal dumping. Illegal dumping continues to plague the city at a rampant pace. The issue has been exasperated since the pandemic. As such, Streets Department crews spend a lot of time addressing the same locations daily. Crews often have to repeatedly address the same locations because as soon as they clean a site it is dumped on again.
“We have 250 cameras installed at known illegal dump sites across the city. We work with the Police Department and DA Office to enforce and prosecute offenders.”
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