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Snohomish County’s Litter Wranglers

Harvey Field
Published:2017-07-01 County
Snohomish County’s Litter Wranglers     Print Snohomish Times    
Snohomish County’s Litter Wranglers

Dropping a candy wrapper in the street or tossing a pop can out a car window seems insignificant. However, it all adds up. Snohomish County Public Works is serious about ridding the county of unsightly litter. So serious it has started the Clean Sweep Litter Program, bringing in the Litter Wranglers to rustle up the rubbish. The four-month pilot program will remove litter along the sides of many roads this summer.

“We live in one of the most beautiful areas of the world, and we owe it to both our residents and visitors to eliminate litter,” Snohomish County Executive Dave Somers said. “The Clean Sweep Litter Program will help us keep Snohomish County clean and natural.”

One way the public can help is by letting the Litter Wranglers know of locations that have a lot of litter. After receiving a report, the crew will use the information to plan their week and group site visits so they can be more efficient and effective.

“Residents have been contacting us to report large amounts of litter on our roadways and we’re taking action,” Snohomish County Public Works Director Steve Thomsen said. “We all have to do our part to prevent litter, and this program is one way we can maintain Snohomish County’s natural beauty.”

The Litter Wranglers anticipate that they should be able to respond to a report within a week.

Report a litter location by:
• Emailing: Contact.PWRM@co.snohomish.wa.us
• Calling: 425-388-7500

Residents can also participate in picking up litter by joining the county’s Adopt-A-Road program, which is a partnership between volunteers and Snohomish County Public Works to keep roadsides free of litter. To sign-up, call Adele Barilleaux, program coordinator, at 425-388-3137.
The Litter Wranglers cleaned more than 71 miles of roads during the first month and collected more than 700 bags of litter along with nearly 20 cubic yards of trash. The county-employed six-member crew has been trained on how to safely deal with litter while working along the side of the road amid traffic. Residents may see the Litter Wranglers between 6 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., Monday through Friday throughout the county.

“One of the benefits of this program is that it enables road maintenance crews to stay focused on maintaining and repairing the county’s vital infrastructure,” Snohomish County Solid Waste Director Matt Zybas said. “We are committed to ensuring county roadways are a place that all residents can be proud of. We are receiving a great reaction from the community.”

The Litter Wranglers have seen that response first hand including “thumbs up” when residents drive by. Some drivers have even pulled up to say “thank you,” while some drivers inform the Wranglers of other litter sites.

As you might guess, the Litter Wranglers have found some interesting items including a Ping-Pong table, a BB gun, and they once had a mama and baby bear traipse through their work zone.




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