US Army Corps of Engineers
Pittsburgh District

Tired of tires, other junk

USACE Pittsburgh District
Published Dec. 16, 2014
Maintenance Worker Brian Serafin and Lead Ranger Rich Egger prepare a load of tires for recycling.

Maintenance Worker Brian Serafin and Lead Ranger Rich Egger prepare a load of tires for recycling.

Ranger Kyle Kraynak searches through dumped debris and household goods for owner's identification or information.

Ranger Kyle Kraynak searches through dumped debris and household goods for owner's identification or information.

A ‘Dump and Run’ organ was found along a remote roadway.

A ‘Dump and Run’ organ was found along a remote roadway.

A stack of discarded tires found in a lake access parking lot.

A stack of discarded tires found in a lake access parking lot.

With more than 15,000 acres of land and water surface, and numerous developed and undeveloped recreation sites, Shenango Lake is a regionally popular and enjoyable destination. Hundreds of thousands of people enjoy quality outdoor activities such as camping, ATV riding, boating, hunting, fishing, bird watching and sightseeing. Unfortunately, these valuable assets can also harbor liabilities.  As anyone working on a recreation site can attest, there are a few visitors who don’t appreciate or respect our lakes, rivers, fields and forests.  At times, our areas can attract the wrong type of attention and become illegal dumping targets.

Shenango rangers diligently work to combat such activity with regular patrols as do our four jurisdictional police departments. Considering the remote nature of the many roadways and access points, it’s quite challenging to fully counteract this type of ‘dump and run’ violation. The Law Enforcement Cooperative Agreements with its contracted additional police patrols are suspended for the season, so the dumping problems have accelerated in the past few months.

In an average year, we retrieve hundreds of tires around the Shenango Lake area. We typically work with our partners, the Shenango River Watchers, each spring to properly recycle large pile of accumulated tires; however, in the last two months we picked up an additional 83 tires. Those tires were taken to a local municipal center for disposal. The next day, another 15 tires were found neatly stacked in one of our many lake parking areas. 

At least one active law enforcement investigation is pending, and we have shared this problem on our Facebook page to help raise public awareness and to receive possible tips.

We realize only a few folks are responsible for this issue, but more importantly, the entire staff remains committed to providing a safe and healthy outdoor recreational experience at Shenango Lake.