Environment
10:16 pm
Sun March 9, 2014

PENNDot Calls for Spring Cleaning

Spring cleaning isn’t only for homeowners. It’s for the state, too.

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation has teamed up with the Department of Environmental Protection for its annual Great American Cleanup of Pennsylvania  running now through May 31.

The cleanup calls on volunteers and groups to help clear litter from roadways, trails and shorelines across the commonwealth.

“This kind of effort really goes a long way towards beautifying the roadways,” said Rich Fitzpatrick, spokesman for PennDOT. “Pennsylvania is a beautiful state, and unfortunately, too many people are careless about what they do with their trash.”

More than 137,000 volunteers collected approximately 6.1 million pounds of litter during last year’s cleanup. Groups involved in PennDOTS’s Adopt-a-Highway program, which included more than 72,000 volunteers, cleaned nearly 11,000 miles of roadway.

Fitzpatrick said he expects similar results this year.

“The fact of the matter is that we do have this ongoing problem,” Fitzpatrick said. “So that’s why it’s so critical for the Great American Cleanup to draw volunteers from across the state to really help keep our highways and trails as beautiful as they can be.”

PennDOT is providing gloves, trash bags and safety vests until the effort is over.  Registered cleanup events also have access to free disposal at participating landfills, Fitzpatrick said.

“We appreciate the volunteers coming forward and we provide these tools that they need to help with this effort,” Fitzpatrick said.

According to Fitzpatrick, the real effort starts well before the Great American Cleanup with people being less “careless” with their trash.