State Police, PennDOT ramp up litter enforcement

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SCRANTON, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU-TV) — Just one day after Earth Day, state police and PennDOT are ramping up litter enforcement. 

Trash comes in all shapes and sizes as it sits along Pennsylvania roads, posing a threat to the environment and your wallet.

“Not only is it the job of the citizens of the commonwealth of Pennsylvania to keep Pennsylvania beautiful, it is my job and the rest of the state troopers across the state to enforce it,” said Pennsylvania State Police Trooper Robert Urban.

The maximum fine is $900 if caught littering. Fines double in the four litter enforcement corridors in our region. Any law enforcement agency can pull motorists over for littering.

“When you sign your registration card, you are acknowledging that you are aware of these laws. And that by signing, you are making a commitment not to litter,” PennDOT District 4 assistant maintenance director Jonathan Eboli said.

PennDOT officials say garbage can pose as a safety and health hazard.

“That is something we need to address not only here at PennDOT but I think systematically and culturally as well,” PennDOT District 4 director executive Richard Roman said.

“Keep Pennsylvania beautiful” volunteers collected more than 41,000 bags of litter in 2020.

That’s not including PennDOT employees. Each year PennDOT spends millions of dollars cleaning up trash along its highways. Money better spent on fixing roads than litter. 

“As an agency we spend about $14 million every year picking up litter,” Roman said.

To help save money and the earth, Trooper Urban has one simple tip: “We just want to drive this point home. Leave your trash in your car.”

PennDOT litter clean-up crews will be out in full swing this spring and summer. For more information on litter enforcement head to PennDOT’s website.

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