RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - 12 On Your Side stayed on top of a neighborhood complaint about illegal tire dumping in South Richmond and now the tires are gone.
Joseph McGhee says he was shocked returning home from work late Friday and seeing the infamous tire pile they all had complained about for so long getting the attention it should have gotten even before a call to 12 Investigators.
"I was like wow. Results, Came quickly. That was real good. It was about four dump trucks full," McGhee said. "I saw them. They were out here. it was a big crane that picked them up and the crane was just picking them up in each dump truck and they hauled them all away. Four-hundred-fifty tires he picked up. Yea. It was a lot."
Waste tire piles draw criminal activity and undesirables just feet away from people's homes and place of worship. It's frustrating for residents and police because no matter how vigilant they all are, they haven't been able to stop the illegal dumping.
Tire shops and auto repair businesses are supposed to dump waste tires in the City landfill. At least now neighbors say they feel they have the City's attention and somebody cares about their quality of life.
"It's 120 percent better than it was before. I'm thoroughly impressed. It makes you feel like you're wanted and somebody cares for you." McGhee added.
Tires removed from customer vehicles aren't supposed to end up in illegal tire piles but we found about half a dozen just in South Richmond. In this instance, Joseph believes property owners need to do more including install better lighting even the absentee property owner, which in this case, is getting billed by the city for the cleanup.
"It's real dark. When I get off from work my evening job it's pitch black . You can't really see anything back here at all towards the area where they're dumping tires.There's no light back there," he explained. His message to perpetrators who are bringing down decent neighborhoods is, "Hey, take care of your business. Don't dump over here. Don't dump in our neighborhoods anymore."
Richmond police say the only way to permanently solve this problem is to change the law. Make it tougher and hold tire businesses responsible for what happens when waste tires leave their shops.
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