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Don't Trash Arizona
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Mom Says: Prevent Accidental Litter
 
It seems moms always have an answer to everything, especially when kids do something “by accident.” 
 
Like when you accidentally broke the neighbor’s window while playing baseball.  Or, when you accidentally missed curfew because you forgot to wear a watch. And, don’t forget the time you accidentally broke that priceless family heirloom because you were practicing handstands in the kitchen.
 
Pay attention! Mom would say.
 
So this fall, when temperatures increasingly inch toward perfection, practically begging you to roll down the windows in your car, pretend your mom is riding in the front seat.  Pretend she sees how that wonderful fall breeze creates a tornado of potential litter with all the gum wrappers, grocery receipts and empty grocery bags that have been hibernating in your car all summer. 
 
First, she’d tell you to clean your car. That’s a guarantee. Then, she’d tell you to pay attention.  Of course she understands that accidents happen. But she also knows some accidents can be avoided.
 
One of those accidents is highway litter, according to Don’t Trash Arizona, a litter education program conducted by the Maricopa Association of Governments in cooperation with the Arizona Department of Transportation.
 
An estimated 1.2 million pounds of litter is picked up from the Valley’s freeways every year, and about 45 percent of that litter has found its way to the side of the freeway “by accident.” It escaped an open-air truck bed, or flew out a window with a gust of wind after bouncing around the back seat for a few exits. 
 
Intentional or not, litter is still litter, and it is ALWAYS preventable. It still costs the same amount to clean it up—about $3 million each year. It still looks just as ugly on the side of the highway, and it still takes just as long to decompose.
 
For a plastic grocery bag, that’s at least 500 years.
 
Listen to Mom. She’s right on this one. Did you hear her? Pay attention, she said, and Don’t Trash Arizona.
 
 
 
 
Report a Violation
Free Litter Bag
 
 
 
 
 
Maricopa Association of Governments ADOT Don't Trash Arizona
 
©2015 Maricopa Association of Governments
302 North 1st Avenue, Suite 300, Phoenix, AZ 85003
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