Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) seeks volunteers to help clean Missouri roadways during its "No MOre Trash! Bash."
No MOre Trash! Bash is an annual outreach of MoDOT's year round litter control efforts that encourages all Missourians to "pitch in and pick up" during the month of April, according to a news release from MoDOT.
The timing of the trash pickup occurs right before mowing season. And, the campaign is designed to lower litter control costs, according to the release.
"In 2022, MoDOT spent $7.7 million to remove litter from more than 385,000 acres of right-of-way along nearly 34,000 state highway miles." The release added, "For 2023, the work of MoDOT crews and additional litter pickup contracts in Kansas City and St. Louis are expected to bring that total to more than $9 million."
In a study released by Keep America Beautiful, there were an estimated 24 billion pieces of litter on the nation's roadways, according to the release. "If littering were to stop today... every American would only need to pick up 152 pieces of litter... to ensure a litter-free nation," the study determined.
For those that volunteer, MoDOT will provide trash bags and safety vests.
Missouri was one of the first states to implement the Adopt-A-Highway program, which has "recruited volunteers who perform about $1 million a year in litter cleanup," said Becky Allmeroth, MoDOT's chief safety and operations officer.
MoDOT discourages littering, and encourages individuals secure their loads to deter trash pileups along roadways. Both are violations of statutes. Littering is a class A misdemeanor and could result in one year of imprisonment and a fine up to $1,000. Any vehicle without its load completely covered will be assessed a $25 dollar unsecured load fee.
"We're hoping all Missourians will pitch in and pick up trash this April to help us clean Missouri's roadsides during our annual No MOre Trash! Bash," said Allmeroth. "You don't have to be part of a regular Adopt-A-Highway volunteer group to organize a one-time volunteer effort."
To learn about how you can participate, visit https://www.modot.org/adopt-highway or call MoDOT at 1-888-275-6636.