Saddened by all the trash in our area
To the editor:
What happened while I was gone living my life in various places across the United States? What happened to my beloved Columbiana County?
I have always been and still am proud of where I was born and grew up. However, I am deeply saddened by the enormous amounts of trash I see discarded along various highways and ditches.
A recent story on the local news mentioned it was the Ohio Department of Transportation who is responsible for cleaning up our freeways while at the same time performing snow removal and endless repairs. It is an overwhelming task that never gets completed, though not due to lack of effort on their part. But what about the secondary and rural ditches? Who cleans them up and why do people feel it’s OK to dispose of their trash out the car window in the first place?
I recently drove along a rural road with my husband enjoying the sunny, spring afternoon. A car we were following swerved into the other lane because the driver blatantly was more intent on hurling his half-full water bottle over his car roof and into the ditch of a homeowner’s yard! A driving safety hazard, for certain, not to mention the fact we were witness to a moral violation and the offender was not concerned, in the least.
What’s the best way to address this unsightly problem? Number one, and the obvious solution would be to take pride in your community by not using our ditches as your personal garbage can. Number two, secure your trash cans so windy days and animals don’t scatter your garbage to the surrounding area. Number three, when you see that number two has occurred be of good moral standing and clean up your mess! How about organizing clean up days?
Other communities I’ve lived in have Adopt-A-Highway programs that are sponsored by churches, schools, businesses and organizations. They use volunteers to rally around designated roadways they wish to see cleaned up and the city recognizes them for their efforts. I have also seen where incarcerated people are put to work on our roadways, under strict supervision.
We have several neighborhood watch groups. How about neighborhood clean up groups? It takes only an extra couple of minutes to pick up and properly dispose of trash in your path, but the enormous amounts I see while traveling our local county roadways is disheartening.
Please join me in making a genuine effort to make our county cleaner. Contact your local county officials to get their solutions to this unsightly problem.