RIDOT, R.I. Resource Recovery and state police team up to reduce littering

JOHNSTON, R.I. (WPRI) — Forces have joined together to help reduce littering near the Rhode Island Central Landfill in Johnston.

The Rhode Island Department of Transportation (RIDOT), the Rhode Island State Police and the Rhode Island Resource Recovery Corporation have come together to work on a new initiative to reduce littering on highways and roads leading to the landfill.

Plainfield Pike, I-295, Roue 6 and Shun Pike are just some of the roads with large amounts of litter that require more cleaning because of trash and debris blowing out of bed trucks, says Charles St. Martin of RIDOT.

Because large commercial vehicles generally secure their loads, this campaign is said to focus on smaller commercial truck drivers in all industries and of all sizes, according to Martin. Martin says around 900 trucks are serviced everyday at the Central Landfill.

As part of this initiative, over 100 signs indicating fines for littering have been installed and the state and local police will be increasing enforcement for debris blowing off of trucks and unsecured loads, Martin says.

“More than an eyesore and unwelcoming message to travelers, litter is a big drain on our resources,” RIDOT Director Peter Alviti Jr. said. “Resources that otherwise can be used to patch potholes, repair street lights, clean bridges and perform other tasks vitally important for maintaining our transportation infrastructure.”

According to Martin, litter clean-up by RIDOT, often completed with inmate cleaning crews, costs approximately $400 thousand per year.