Returning the trash to illegal dumpers

(WXYZ) - Illegal dumping is a persistent problem in Detroit. With little fear of getting caught, the dumpers are getting bolder.

William Eckel recently moved to Detroit from Kentucky after serving our country. It wasn't until the snow melted that Eckel realized the massive trash pile next door to his new home.

Action News reporter Ronnie Dahl dug through the debris to look for clues as to how the garbage ended up next door. She discovered a few pieces of mail with a nearby address. When she asked the current residents about the garbage, the person who answered the door said it wasn't hers, and she didn't know how it got there.

It's not just individuals dumping. Evidence in the debris piles indicate the trash is coming from businesses as well.  Some from close by, others from the suburbs.

Residents are becoming increasingly fed up with the dumpers and their dirty deeds. In some cases, they've chased illegal dumpers down and made them return and clean up their mess.  When they can't chase them down, some residents have begun taking pictures and posting them on social media sites.

Some dumpers do it out of laziness, others do it for financial reasons. They don't want to pay the cost to properly dispose of the debris.

Due to Detroit's financial crisis, few resources have been available to address the problem. Dumpers have gotten bolder. Our camera caught two guys dragging a large container of debris out of a house on the city's east side. It was the middle of the afternoon.

After years of little to no enforcement, city leaders are renewing efforts to address Detroit's illegal dumping problem.  With private companies taking over some of Detroit's trash collection duties, Detroit Public Works employees will be freed up to start going after illegal dumpers.

Fines for illegal dumping vary but could go up to $10,000. Violators also risked having their vehicles impounded.

To report illegal dumping in Detroit, call 313-224-6000. When possible, please record time, date, location, description of vehicle, company name or log and the license plate number.

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