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Litter & Visual Pollution on the Motorway Network

2

Comments

  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 59,825 Mod ✭✭✭✭ L1011


    The litter problem is getting a minor level of abatement now - I've seen picking crews on the M1 (PPP section), M4 (untolled section), M50 and M8 (untolled sections) in the past two weeks.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 3,010 Tech3


    Mod Note:

    Mysterious has been banned for 1 month for constant soapboxing.


  • Registered Users Posts: 108 ✭✭ lostinNaas


    I just reported the entire Naas bypass on the EPA illegal dumping hotline - 1850365121.

    They were very happy to take the report and promised to pursue Kildare CC. I don't know if it will have any effect, but it was therapeutic at least.

    Local authorities are obliged to take action on EPA reports, so I suggest a concerted campaign of complaints to the EPA. Just pick a section that they can report to a particular local authority.


  • Registered Users Posts: 235 ✭✭ eddiej


    The N2/M2 stretch from M50 to Ashbourne needs to go on the list. It is absolutely full of what looks like shrink wrap plastic on the tress, also black bags and general rubbish. Not a H&S freak but surely this should be removed as there is a minor risk of rubbish contributing to accidents.

    Think a highways maintenance agency is a really good idea, not just litter but should include the following;

    Keeping shore / road gullies clear
    Replacing broken misaligned signage
    Repair of crash barriers
    Cleaning road signs so we can see them
    Picking litter
    Light maintenace and maybe looking at reducing number on certain junctions e.g turning off every second lamp

    Other suggestions welcome. This could (and we need to start thinking new and trying to put stuff right) be a small agency 10 people maybe restrict to M and N routes who contract out the services as required but they police/inspect work and schedule when needed

    Mysterious since you enjoy Einstein

    We cannot solve problems with the same ideas that we used to create them

    EJ


  • Registered Users Posts: 741 ✭✭✭ alentejo


    Totally agree that the new motorway network is filthy. One small issue that some of the parking spots dont have any litter bins (eg M9 Dublin - Carlow)


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  • Registered Users Posts: 342 ✭✭ NedNew2


    alentejo wrote: »
    Totally agree that the new motorway network is filthy. One small issue that some of the parking spots dont have any litter bins (eg M9 Dublin - Carlow)

    I wouldn't necessarily agree. There was a picnic area/lay-by on the N25 between Waterford and New Ross which was almost always heavily littered due to overflowing bins and careless/shameless people. Crows were also a real problem as they used to pull the rubbish out of the bins.

    The eventual and effective solution was to remove the bins altogether and instead place signs warning of fines for littering. Visitors had to bring their rubbish with them. That solved the problem completely in that location.


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,781 ✭✭✭ Carawaystick


    In fairness, however littered the road network is, It's probably neater and tidier than the section of rail line just west of Tullamore station.....


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 20,012 ✭✭✭✭ Run_to_da_hills


    A little bit of detective work can work effectively, addresses left in bin liners etc. I reported a black bag of rubbish that was dumped in the Metals lane way by the Dart in South Dublin, a dog / fox had ripped it apart leaving the evidence exposed.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,219 ✭✭✭ D.L.R.


    We have a real problem in this country generally, regarding presentation/maintenance. Doesn't seem to figure highly in the national psyche, the image thing. The whole country needs a sweep.


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,110 KevR


    Litter and Polution issue, although not motorway/road related:
    http://www.rte.ie/news/2010/0321/environment.html


    Funnily enough, I was walking along by the Eglington Canal in Galway this morning and there were 3 people in cannoes picking rubbish out of the canal. Fair play to them!


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  • Registered Users Posts: 134 ✭✭ d4v1d


    regarding litter in general i think people, even those concerned by the disgrace our country is in, are still waiting for the council/government to provide solutions. you can't help but think of homer simpson 'can't someone else do it' :)

    i'm willing to go out and pick the litter up off the side of the motorway (m9 in my case). today, one of the councillors sitting on the carlow council is calling in as i want to discuss with him on how to go about this. if i bag the rubbish, will the council then come and collect.

    it's that simple, if it bothers you, go out and do something about it. if anyone wants to give me a hand then feel free to contact me.


  • Moderators, Home & Garden Moderators, Social & Fun Moderators Posts: 31,035 Mod ✭✭✭✭ dolanbaker


    d4v1d wrote: »
    regarding litter in general i think people, even those concerned by the disgrace our country is in, are still waiting for the council/government to provide solutions. you can't help but think of homer simpson 'can't someone else do it' :)

    i'm willing to go out and pick the litter up off the side of the motorway (m9 in my case). today, one of the councillors sitting on the carlow council is calling in as i want to discuss with him on how to go about this. if i bag the rubbish, will the council then come and collect.

    it's that simple, if it bothers you, go out and do something about it. if anyone wants to give me a hand then feel free to contact me.

    If you bag rubbish and leave the bag next to the road, you leave yourself open to being done for littering! That's without mentioning possible violations that prohibit pedestrians from being on a motorway & health and safety.


  • Registered Users Posts: 488 ✭✭ fresca


    I fear that this is a trend that will be repeated all over the country...

    http://www.radiokerry.ie/news/
    22 Mar 2010More rubbish than ever being dumped in the Kerry countryside

    Efforts to win the war against litter in Kerry, are being severely hampered by staffing cutbacks at Kerry County Council.
    That's according to the council's Environmental Officer Micháel Ó Coileáin, who says that despite the council's best efforts, there is more rubbish than ever being dumped in the Kerry countryside.
    He said more people than ever are engaging in indiscriminate dumping, and the council simply doesn't have enough staff to deal with the scale of the problem.


  • Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators Posts: 4,311 Mod ✭✭✭✭ spacetweek


    KevR wrote: »
    Like I was saying in the M8 thread, I'd like to see something similar to the New York "broken glass" approach adopted in Ireland to tackle litter problems on our roads. An intensive effort to clean up the roadsides followed by a zero tolerence approach to littering.
    Can you tell me more about this approach? How did it work?
    KevR wrote: »
    In some cases it might be possible to tell people it's not acceptable to litter but on motorways and other high speed roads it's not always going to be quite so simple. I would definitely like to see cameras in litter blackspots such as rest areas on the motorways.
    I had thought of this a while back. There's a precedent in other countries for it too - the UK is an example. Over there I've heard that some councils use CCTV cameras to catch litterers. It's labour intensive, but could work well at rest stops and traffic lights (two black spots) - litter can easily be spotted coming out a window, and the reg plate can be seen - which leads you to a home address where the vehicle is registered.
    csd wrote: »
    One thing I did notice was the litter seemed to be less of a problem on the PPP stretches of the M1 and M8. Maybe this is the answer -- the councils can't be trusted to keep the motorways/primary routes clean, so why not contract it out to the private sector?
    /csd
    This is very interesting. If it's true, then it proves that the problem is with the council and that you could, if you wanted, have zero litter - it's just a question of priorities and resources.
    KevR wrote: »
    I mentioned in the M8 thread that people are less likely to litter a street or road if it is clean. If a street or road is already badly littered then people will be more likely to throw down that "one more small piece of litter" because it "won't really make a difference". I think an intensive clean-up followed by a zero-tolerence approach is the best way to go. Hold people responsible for their actions if they can't/won't be sensible and considerate in their actions.
    Yes, I read an article in a magazine years ago about the psychology of littering. Basically litter, and frequency of littering, go up together on the graph. A clean area stays clean; a dirty area gets dirtier really fast. The trick is to have two policies - a zero-litter policy, implemented by having frequent clean-ups; and a punishment for those who violate it.
    fresca wrote: »
    If you find so called fly-tipping please call the EPA Hotline on 1850-365-121.
    More info at http://www.epa.ie/.
    Thank you very much for that number, I've it saved in my phone and shall be ringing them.

    I really think this is a problem that could be solved. In Ireland, there are examples in the past where we've identified a problem, and, given sufficient will, priority and resources, solved it. The smoking ban and the big reduction in road deaths are two that spring to mind. Neither could have been predicted in advance really.

    The problem with littering is that there's no will ("Who cares?"), priority (no national strategy, no celebrity behind it á la Gay Byrne), or resources (cleanups are underfunded and many roads appear to have no cleaning occurring at all, judging by the age of the litter).


  • Registered Users Posts: 165 ✭✭ emfifty


    we need to take a leaf out of the nordies book. take a look at some photos of the new newry bypass under construction. now take a look at some of the immaculate landscaping.

    time for ZERO tolerance re litter/weeds/bad landscaping in this country!:(

    http://www.wesleyjohnston.com/roads/a1beechhillcloghogue.html


  • Registered Users Posts: 131 ✭✭ ForiegnNational


    As one of the people who walk the countryside with bin bag and gloves in hand, I can report that the type of littering experienced over the last four years has changed fundamentally.

    During the boom years, the majority of litter was breakfast/food material that people (I won't say builders, but it seems obvious by the change that it is) dumped on the way to work (e.g. Lucozade and energy drinks bottles, coffee cups, breakfast roll wraps, etc).

    Now the problem is fly tipping. People coming out into the countryside and fly tipping trailer loads or rubbish in the banks and verges.

    I partially blame the introduction of the 3 Euro entrance fee for the recycling centres.

    Fly tipping is obvious on the motorway network as well. I do the Cork to Dublin drive most weekends and I can only agree with earlier posters that the laybys are simply inundated with large quantities or rubbish.

    We should therefore look to address the need to fly tip (which although always present has rocketed). I think that scrapping the charge to simply go into the recycling centre is a must as if people are happy to fly tip, they are definitely not the sort of people who would pay to recycle their waste in the first place.

    I could rant, but I will leave it here for now...


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 624 Aidan1


    The shocking thing is how predictable it is - if you drive east or west from Athlone on the M6 for about the length of time it takes to eat a burger, you start to see fast food packaging strewn along the hard shoulder. There are some real blackspots

    The Local Authorities seem to be doing something about this now though - on the M7 in Kildare on Friday morning there were people trawling the hardshoulder and verge with black plastic bags (by Mooreabbey, and again further South). On the N25 on Saturday there were a number of ladies doing the same on one of the on ramps in Carrigtwohill (could be the Tidy towns Ctte though?).


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,906 ✭✭✭ crushproof


    One thing I have noticed is the amount of those "Mini Skip" waste bags being dumped, with the name of the distributor...and therefore owner of the bags being clearly labelled on them. I emailed one of the companies about 3 of these bags dumped up in Cherrywood last week and I didn't receive any reply at all, I'll be ringing them anyway.

    Just wondering is the company liable for these or the people who rented them out?!
    I mean, how on earth do these end up in a ditch on the side of a road?! The customer rents them, fills them up with waste and then the operator collects them and brings them to a waste facility? Really can't see how so many are ending up being illegally dumped?!

    Also, CCTV doesn't always work, they had a thing on RTE a while back about litter wardens and they set up hidden CCTV in a litter blackspot, all the vans that were caught dumping had false plates.

    I definitely think the charges for recycling centres should be dropped, people who don't have a conscience are obviously going to dump their waste rather then pay for it to be treated in a environmentally friendly way. And I think the WEEE drop off service in electrical shops should be advertised more. It's crazy how much fly tipping there has been recently, it really does taint our country.


  • Moderators, Home & Garden Moderators, Social & Fun Moderators Posts: 31,035 Mod ✭✭✭✭ dolanbaker


    My understanding is that the skip bags are bought or sometimes given away to customers who then have to pay for the collection and disposal of the bag and contents. I don't believe the suppliers are liable for misuse of the bags, as providing the bags is not part of a contract to collect the full bags afterwards.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,090 ✭✭✭ marmurr1916


    damoz wrote: »
    Ok so here is the reply i got from the NRA :

    Thank you for your email regarding litter control on the M8.

    Under the Roads Act, the maintenance of all national and regional roads in a county or city is a function of the council of that county or city. In the case of the M8, the road authorities concerned are Laois, Cork and Tipperary County Councils.

    Funding is provided by the government and allocated through the Authority to each local authority to maintain national roads in their area. Programming to carry out the specific tasks is decided by the local authority within the available budget. It should be noted however, that the maintenance budget which covers a number of areas such as repair work to potholes, litter picking, winter maintenance, has been significantly reduced in recent years.


    As indicated in your email, responsibility for litter rests initially with those members of the public who discard rubbish and litter in this manner. While the local authorities are working within available budgets to ensure that an adequate level of service is maintained, the real solution lies in the hands of the public.

    ________________

    So where should i go next - i suppose each county council. I am not too optimistic though, as in ireland i am sure it will just be a case of getting a run around and excuses - and no action will be taken. But im willing to at least try.


    I'm amazed (well not really) that they haven't set national standards for cleaning and maintaining motorways.

    They're among the most expensive pieces of infrastructure built since independence (and likely to remain so for a long while) and they should be maintained properly.

    The NRA and the councils don't seem to realise the safety issues either; loose litter blowing around a motorway isn't exactly a plus for safety.

    Maybe you should try the Road Safety Authority?


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  • Registered Users Posts: 488 ✭✭ fresca


    seems like Sarah Carey, writing in the Irish Times, picked up on the volume of litter in the country...
    http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/opinion/2010/0414/1224268309174.html


  • Registered Users Posts: 7,441 ✭✭✭ munchkin_utd


    Its not just motorways that are a sham.

    I had the "pleasure" of clocking up 2500 km over the past 2 weeks on holiday in Ireland north and south.

    From my travels the 2+1 from Monaghan to Castleblaney was by FAR the worst road for litter and the most of it concentrated in the little lay bys along the road. Its a pity i never took a picture.

    Aside from litter, it is astounding how much tyre debris is left lying about the new road network both motorways and N roads.
    The litter is an eyesore but 3/4 of a lorry tyre lying just beside the overtaking lane on a motorway is just damn dangerous.
    I was thinking of reporting it but I wouldnt have made much progress if i was to stop and note down each offending bit of debris!!

    It was a pleasure though to behold how well the DOE roads service looks after the roads in Northern Ireland. Pity the south couldnt achieve similar standards.


  • Registered Users Posts: 9,174 ✭✭✭ sdanseo


    It was a pleasure though to behold how well the DOE roads service looks after the roads in Northern Ireland. Pity the south couldnt achieve similar standards.

    Pity that aside from the litter situation, their roads are in tatters compared to ours. Bad to non-existent lining, loose or worn surfaces almost inconsistently around Fermanagh last time I was up there last week.

    What ROI needs anyway is a Motorway Maintenance body similar to the UK Highways Agency, seems to work very well over there.


  • Registered Users Posts: 306 ✭✭ busman


    A COMPANY is about to make history by "adopting a road" in Co Cork — spending €10,000 a year to keep it litter free.

    From the Examiner :

    http://irishexaminer.ie/ireland/firm-adopts-a-road-to-fight-litter-117250.html


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,095 ✭✭✭ nordydan


    sdonn wrote: »
    Pity that aside from the litter situation, their roads are in tatters compared to ours. Bad to non-existent lining, loose or worn surfaces almost inconsistently around Fermanagh last time I was up there last week.

    I have to agree with this, some of the roads around east Down (Downpatrick) are absolutely disgraceful and worse than anything I've seen in the Republic during the last few months. Only the A roads in and out of the town are up to scratch


  • Registered Users Posts: 165 ✭✭ emfifty


    noticed the kildare town bypass much cleaner than usual. must have done a litter control in last few weeks due to fine weather...

    agreed on highways agency equivalent. needs to happen asap.


  • Registered Users Posts: 760 ✭✭✭ dRNk SAnTA


    Joint Committee On Transport Debate, 7 April 2010 with the NRA, the litter problem was talked about. Read the whole thing here.
    My office wrote to the NRA ten days ago about the appalling litter problem on the Ashbourne bypass. We received an immediate response. It was clear responsibility would be transferred to Meath County Council within 12 months, but the staff of the NRA cleared litter on the Dublin side and moved on. Is there any way the NRA could catch the culprits? It is the most ugly site as one enters County Meath. I am aware that we have our problems in the county with dumping on bogs. The NRA has started a clean-up and it makes a difference. People contact us to state that they appreciate the quick response. Cameras have been put in place and while I appreciate they are expensive, if two or three people caught dumping rubbish on the Ashbourne bypass were made an example of, it would act as a deterrent throughout the country. In spring our main roads and their shrubberies are a lovely sight, but it is just unreal if one goes down the Ashbourne bypass at the moment. I would appreciate a quick response.
    Litter presents a huge problem throughout the country, including the Ashbourne bypass. The sides of national and non-national roads are a disgrace. We have very limited funds in our maintenance budget, which is where litter removal is funded from. More than ever this year, the maintenance budget has been used to pay for snow and ice removal and the repair of damage done by snow and ice. Moneys available to local authorities to clean up roads are extremely limited this year and there is no magic wand available. We do not have the money to give to local authorities. We are not stating they have enough to do the job. We will work with them to do the best that can be done with the money available but short of receiving extra funding - I have no reason to expect there will be extra funding available - we can do what we can; we simply have to exhort people to stop throwing their litter around the place.
    Is litter being thrown out of car windows?
    Yes; people throw bags of litter at the sides of dark roads at night.
    There are even beds thrown out. One could sleep on the Ashbourne bypass.
    Waste from houses is thrown out, including old bath tubs.
    Would it be possible to place CCTV cameras or take other preventive measures where there is a serious littering problem? I take it there are sanctions and fines for those caught littering, particularly on national primary roads or motorways.
    I am sure some people are being fined, but I do not hear much about it. It is a matter for the Garda to prosecute.
    Surely if several high profile cases were prosecuted, it would have a preventative effect. An effort could be made to catch people out.
    We would be delighted to see that happen and would be strongly support any such initiative.


  • Registered Users Posts: 18,777 ✭✭✭✭ murphaph


    The answer lies in detecting and SEVERELY punishing the culprits. It's an afront to society which really gets my goat. I would punish this and vandalism etc. with a couple of weeks in prison, even for a first offence.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 88,981 ✭✭✭✭ mike65


    How are the verges of the N8 leaving Cork these days? The section just after the roundabout as you go up the hill was festooned in what was probably many years worth of litter when I drove that road in the past.

    Re the N25 the Wexford section mentioned earlier, yep they do a good job keeping it trimmed, tidy and clean.


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  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 59,825 Mod ✭✭✭✭ L1011


    emfifty wrote: »

    agreed on highways agency equivalent. needs to happen asap.

    We have one, its called the NRA... extend their powers rather than form ANOTHER QUANGO.


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