Cleaning up Colleton
by The Press and Standard | May 3, 2019 5:00 am
Last Updated: May 1, 2019 at 11:25 am
Colleton’s Earth Day cleanup was a learning experience for Keep Colleton Beautiful Chairman Ladson Fishburne.
“The county-wide event was a first for Keep Colleton Beautiful and I learned a lot throughout the day,” he said. “I figured out quickly what worked and what I need to change for the next big event.”
“One thing that caught me off guard was how hard the volunteers worked. I could barely keep bags in their hands because they were covering so much ground and picking up a ton of litter.”
Fishburne said more than 150 volunteers signed on for the Lowcountry Earth Day cleanup.
He added that those volunteers collected between 700 and 750 large plastic litter bags that were provided by the South Carolina Department of Transportation. The employee of the SCDOT maintenance garage handled the collection of the filled bags out in the county.
Fishburne said he was forced to estimate how many bags were collected because some of the litter bags were picked up prior to the end of the daylong event.
“The day was a huge success, multiple parties came together with great attitudes to help clean Colleton,” Fishburne said.
Wildwood Contracting Inc. put together the manpower and equipment to tackle illegal dumpsites throughout the county, removing dump truck loads of debris to appropriate landfills.
Another team effort found a few county employees joining the members of the BZS Community Center to collect a total of 49 bags in the Ruffin area.
Fishburne explained that the Ruffin group had to cover a lot of ground to fill the 49 bags because they have community cleanups throughout the year.
“They were the furthest group from Walterboro, but it is very special group to Keep Colleton Beautiful because of their pride and involvement in Ruffin,” Fishburne explained. “We look forward to helping them with future cleanups.”
“Thank you to everyone who volunteered and supported this event,” Fishburne said.
“It was a successful day but there is still a lot of litter in Colleton. I encourage everyone to get involved and pick up litter around their business or home, each bag picked up is one more bag closer to being a leader in clean communities,” Fishburne said.
Walterboro’s City Appearance Board Chairman Dana Cheney, who orchestrated the city’s portion of the Earth Day cleanup, said, “ it was great, we had good participation in the city.”
Cheney said members of the city police department, city fire department, and municipal employees from Walterboro’s other departments joined with city administrators, council members and Mayor Bill Young took to the streets to tackle the city’s litter problem.
He suggested that the city’s elected officials participation gave them a change to see the scope of the problem from a different perspective.
That different perspective led to city officials talking about what initiatives the city might employ to step up the litter cleanup and litter enforcement effort,” Cheney said. He suggested that those littering might change their way if a litter ticket hit them in their wallets.
Cheney did a little estimating on the total weight of roadside litter placed in the bags. He figured the bags had an average weight of 15 pounds. He figured 718 bags would have added up to five and one-half tons of litter.
When the Earth Day program was first announced, Cheney pointed out that it falling on April 22 gave the city a chance to clear the town before the Rice Festival began.
With Earth Day completed, Cheney said he and Christian Spires, the city’s tourism director, were back on the city streets on April 30.
On the day before the Downtown Walterboro Criterium, Cheney and Spires walked the streets that make up the course for the annual bicycle race, collecting litter.