By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
I saw what you did last week
Keep Liberty County Beautiful
Placeholder Image
Note: This is an open letter to those who litter our community.

Last weekend, as my husband and I were driving down Islands Highway, we came up behind you in your truck, filled with empty boxes — unsecured, of course.  
Now you must have realized there was a good possibility those boxes might blow off, because you were traveling pretty slow for Islands Highway — just 50 miles per hour.  But even at a slower highway speed, loose containers, garbage bags and even heavier items can go flying. All it takes is a good bump, a sharp turn, a breeze or even another vehicle passing by.
It was only a matter of time. A box flew out onto the side of the road. I hoped you would at least pull over and retrieve it, but, like most litterers, you did not. We took down your tag number and vehicle make and actually followed you to the residence where you parked. You only live a block or so from us, neighbor.
The next morning we looked for the box on the road as we headed for town but it was gone. I am hoping the good soul who retrieved it was you.
You know, you may not realize it, but you — and your fellow drivers who do not secure their truck loads — are a major source of litter on our roads in Georgia and Liberty County.  Trucks carrying unsecured loads, like yours, leave litter on our roads every day. Lots of it, too. Estimates are that at least 60 percent of the litter on Georgia’s roads come from unsecured truckloads, like yours.
They call it “unintentional litter,” which is not a good name. Unintentional makes it sound like maybe it is not your fault. Let’s get real. You knew when you tossed those empty boxes in your truck there was a good chance they might blow out. That seems pretty “intentional” to me.  
You were in a black and silver truck on Friday. I’ll leave the description to that this time. But you and your fellow litterers, travel in a variety of types of vehicles — private and commercial. Some of you even use your truck bed as a mobile garbage can, tossing empty drink and food containers or whatever back there.
Don’t you ever notice that these items do not make the whole trip with you?
Your unsecured load can even be dangerous. Each year, a number of fatalities are caused by road debris. Leah Poole recently had to dodge a chair and a coffee table falling out of a vehicle in front of her. Even smaller items can prove deadly for innocent motorists. Law enforcement officers note most citations written for unsecured loads are issued with motorist safety in mind.
It costs all of us a lot to pick up your litter. The Georgia Department of Transportation spends more than $14 million in taxpayer money to keep state and federal roads picked up. And it costs hundreds of thousands of dollars in our community to pick up litter on our roads.
Wouldn’t it be a lot cheaper for all of us if you would get a tarp or a cargo net and secure your load each time? The rest of us taxpayers would all appreciate it. For $10-20 and a little bit of effort, you could make a significant difference.
After all, it is the law. Under Georgia’s Litter Law (OCGA 40-6-248), anything leaving a vehicle — intentional or not — is litter and can result in a citation. The driver can actually be fined up to $1,000 or spend up to 12 months in jail. For larger litter, the vehicle can even be impounded and the fine can be up to $5,000.
If it were me, I think I would get a tarp instead.  If you care at all, I think you can see it really would not take much money or effort to make sure your load is secure and does not become a litter problem. After all, it is your responsibility and it is the law.
For more information on Keep Liberty County Beautiful programs, contact me at 368-4888 or
Sign up for our e-newsletters