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More Littering
by Jerry Cegelske


July 01, 2004

Residents of North Tongass and those traveling there were given a special treat Wednesday morning, some nice fresh litter scattered in and along the road from two different sources. One interesting thing is that the litter by the Narrows belongs to someone I previously gave a citation to, so this will be their second! If they knew the information that they have made available to the public by littering the roads they would be much more cautious about what they did with it.

The last picture shows litter from a three ring binder that had information on students' grades from a grade school. How would you like it if your children's grades and comments about their progress in school was littered along the road for anyone to see? As it turned out, it was accidentally left on the trunk of a car late Tuesday night when the driver, not knowing it was left there drove off. I collected it in a bag and will return it to the owner as they want to retain the information.

The pictures show two types of littering, one by those that don't care where their trash goes, and the second by someone who made an error in judgement which led to their loss of valuable information. One is a mistake, the second is inexcusable, but both end up as litter on our roads.

The pictures of the raven and the truck show what happens when people leave garbage bags in the back of their truck for a short period of time. I was facetiously told by someone that a raven can see trash bags from three miles away. I'm not so sure they can't. Years ago I watched ravens pulling garbage out of bags in the back of a truck by the old 108 bar. It was when they pulled out the third slice of bread that I realized that it wasn't garbage they were digging into, it was groceries. The same thing was observed in Fairbanks when the ravens opened a box of meat on top of a box truck, took out a three pound package of pork chops, tossed it to the ground where their feathered friends were in the process of dining on it while the instigators continued to dine from the box. What usually happens with garbage in this situation is that the vehicle driver fails to pick up the trash and drives off, leaving the city, borough or state to clean up their mess.

A week ago I was told about a load that was properly covered by the Recreation Center. I took a picture of it to show people what they need to do to help keep Ketchikan clean. This was one of the few properly covered loads observed in Ketchikan. How many have you seen? Usually it is boxes and trash bags tossed in the back of a truck with no concern about where it ends up. The Solid Waste Facility or landfill gave out tarps to truck drivers to help them cover their loads but very few have used them since they were given them. What is it going to take to make people aware of their responsibilities?

Jerry Cegelske
Code enforcement - Ketchikan Gateway Borough
Ketchikan, AK - USA



Raven checking out the trash & seeing what is available.
Paint can the raven tossed out of the truck...


A Raven's handiwork- there was no food garbage in the bag


A properly covered load


Fresh litter on North Tongass by the Narrows


Litter from a three ring binder that had
confidential information on students' grades from a grade school...



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