Volunteers to clean up WV roads for Adopt-A-Highway program this Saturday

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — More than 3,000 people will be cleaning up West Virginia’s roads during an upcoming statewide event hosted by the Department of Environmental Protection.

The Adopt-A-Highway Spring Statewide Cleanup is set for Saturday.

Coordinator Kim Smith said the event was canceled in 2020 and 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, so volunteers are eager to get back to work.

“The goal is to help take pride in West Virginia, beautify the state and get that litter off the roadways,” Smith said.

As of Thursday morning, Smith said about 300 groups have signed up so far.

Common items found on roads include plastic bottles, cans and tires. Smith said the volume of the trash they collect hasn’t changed over the years.

“It’s about the same. Last year, we picked up about 252 tons of trash, which is about on average,” she said.

Since the program’s inception in 1988, volunteers have cleaned up close to 70,000 miles of state highways and roads during annual spring and fall Adopt-A-Highway events.

Individuals, families, churches, businesses, schools, civic organizations, government agencies and communities are all eligible to register. The event is taking place on almost any state-maintained road, back road or main route.

Due to COVID-19, each group must designate a person to do a curbside pickup of the supplies at their garage.

The program provides garbage bags, work gloves and safety vests to volunteers and takes care of disposing of collected trash.

Volunteers must be at least 12 years old to participate.

The Adopt-A-Highway program is administered by the DEP’s Rehabilitation Environmental Action Plan (REAP).

To register for Saturday’s cleanup, call 1-800-322-5530 or send an email to dep.aah@wv.gov.

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