Volunteers Join to Pull 300 Tires From Their Town's River

Abandoned tires were spoiling one of the most beautiful views around, so they took action.

There's nothing more pleasant in the fall than a hike through the woods along a creek, or if you're lucky, a quiet canoe or kayak ride along a lazy river. And nothing more unpleasant than seeing abandoned tires strewn along the shore.

A group of volunteers weren't about to allow ugly and environmentally dangerous tires spoil the Youghiogheny River in the town of West Newton, east of Pittsburgh. Over the weekend, 65 folks took to a 4-mile stretch of the "Yough" (pronounced "yock") to pick up as many tires as they could.

It was a real community effort! Westmoreland Cleanways organized the volunteer crew, which included the local Rotary and members of the Belle Vernon Area High School Outdoor Club (below).

Youghiogheny Canoe Outfitters provided the canoes the volunteers used to scan the river banks for tires. Some dump sites were piled so high with old tires, volunteers couldn't collect them all. "All the canoes were filled, we couldn't even get them," Cleanways director Ellen Keefe told TribLive .

County Hauling provided a large dumpser that ended up being filled to the top with 300 old tires, which will be recycled. Keefe says not ony do abandoned tires ruin the landscape, they can leech dangerous chemicals and oil into the river. "We are definitely planning to do this next year," she told the Trib.

"This will become an annual event!"

Keefe says there's really no excuse for dumping tires. Her group will recycle them for a small fee ( click here to contact them ). In your community, check with your local garage to see if they recycle tires, or keep an eye out for local hard-to-recycle events that are often organized by environmental resources groups.

If there's no collection where you live, why not #StartSomethingGood by organizing a recycling event? You'll be doing your neighbors and the environment a favor!

(Images: Westmoreland Cleanways Facebook page )

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