Ohio River Sweep volunteers needed
Published 5:42 am Monday, May 9, 2022
The annual Ohio River Sweep will be Saturday and the event organizers are looking for volunteers.
The cleanup is a large event with the goal of cleaning 3,000 miles of the banks of the Ohio River across six states, from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania to Cairo, Illinois.
Locally, the Lawrence-Scioto Solid Waste District will be having three locations for volunteers to cleanup from 9 a.m.-noon, including the Ironton boat dock, the Coal Grove boat dock and the South Point boat dock.
Rick Jansen, director of the LSSWD, said that there hasn’t been an Ohio River Sweep for the past couple of years because of COVID-19 and is happy to get back at it.
“We will be encouraging a little bit of social distancing because we are not out of this COVID-19 thing yet,” he said. “After two years, it is good to get back at it. We want to make this a fun event and get people back into it. And it is really needed. Because we can’t just push things back into the river, the trash ends up in rivers and streams and eventually, the ocean.”
He added the solid waste district will be supplying bags, gloves and grabbers as well as a free Ohio River Sweep T-shirts as long as supplies last.
The volunteers will be targeting plastic bottles, cans and tires.
Safety tips for volunteers include to watch where you walk to avoid broken glass, needles, rusty nails and poison ivy, never place yourself in a dangerous situation such as trying to collect trash floating in the river, wear old, comfortable clothing and shoes that you don’t mind getting dirty, wear the gloves that will be provided to protect hands and avoid areas overgrown with weeds and/or vegetation.
All volunteers are required to sign a waiver before litter pickup begins.
For more information or to register your group, contact Rick Jansen at the Lawrence-Scioto County Solid Waste Management District, 101 N. Third St., Ironton, or call 740-532-1231 between the hours of 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.
The Ohio River Sweep began in 1989 and is done by Ohio River Valley Water Sanitation Commission, FORE, and the environmental protection agencies from Ohio, West Virginia, Kentucky, Illinois, Indiana and Pennsylvania.