Florida Department of Transportation officials accuse Florida drivers for huge amount of waste on highways statewide
LEE COUNTY, Florida — Amy Perez, an engineer with the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT), told us on Monday that trash on Interstate 75 from Naples to Tampa was making driving dangerous for everyone.
“In the last two months, we have picked up 226 tons of trash and garbage,” said Perez. Perez said the increase is more than 100% compared to just three years ago. This is a big reason why, on Monday, Perez said it was causing FDOT contractors to hire 10 more people to clean up the area from Naples to Tampa.
Perez said that the easiest way to solve the problem is to require drivers to tie down their trash loads before taking them across the roads and highways of Southwest Florida.
Lieutenant Greg Bueno of the Florida Highway Patrol said that it doesn’t matter how big something is if it falls out of a car and hurts someone. Bueno said, “It’s an immediate danger because that bucket is a real missile.”
Bueno said that a missile could cause a driver who is following another driver to swerve and crash, which could require an FDOT cleanup crew. That’s what Bueno said happened when a car hit two FDOT contractors on I-75 in Collier County early on the morning of February 11.
Bueno said, “We are definitely praying for their full and complete recovery.” Bueno didn’t talk about any possible charges on Monday. Bueno said that drivers need to tie down their loads and not get out of their cars to pick up trash.