Watch for Department of Ecology Youth Corps litter crews along King County roads

June 27, 2012

By Warren Kagarise

NEW — 8 a.m. June 27, 2012

Motorists should use extra caution on King County roads in the months ahead, as teenagers clear litter for the state Department of Ecology.

The agency operates the Ecology Youth Corps program for teenagers age 14 to 17. Motorists should watch for orange “Ecology youth working” signs along state highways.

“Safety is our No. 1 priority,” said Steven Williams, regional litter administrator and coordinator for the Ecology Youth Corps. “Every driver needs to stay alert when passing a litter crew. For most crew members, it’s their first job. We’re proud of their work to help keep our roadways litter-free.”

Statewide, Ecology Youth Corps crews cleaned almost 5,225 miles of roadways, picked up 505 tons of litter and recycled 90 tons of materials last year — including more than 84 tons of litter in King County.

Members earn $9.04 per hour, and work 7.5 hours per day, Monday through Friday. Crews operate from June 28 through July 25 and from July 26 through Aug. 21.

Littering can draw fines up to $1,025. Fines for illegal dumping range from $1,000 to $5,000 plus jail time.

In addition to the King County effort, Ecology Youth Corps members plan to fan out on roadsides in Skagit, Snohomish and Whatcom counties.

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