Hermanville resident Stephanie Haines is tired of the litter.
Police are investigating the disposal of hundreds of tires into a stream off the side of the residential road last week, following what they said were “multiple” reports of the tires being disposed in two locations in southern St. Mary’s County.
As late as Tuesday afternoon, the vast rubber piles were strewn about past the guardrail off Hermanville Road, on private property alongside a disposed-of mattress, beer cans and a television set, with many tires rolling into a small creek connected to the St. Mary’s River.
“We want charges pressed,” Haines, a retired teacher from Ridge Elementary School who owns part of the private property where the tires were dumped, said on Wednesday morning, just after the tires had been removed from the property. “But who knows if they’ll find the goofball who did it.”
Having lived off Hermanville for four decades, Haines said there have been littered tires before, but she has never seen the amount that was dumped the week of Christmas, which she discovered while on a walk after the holiday.
“We sometimes get a few tires, and you fish them out,” she said, adding the hundreds of tires were “pretty disgusting.”
The St. Mary’s County Department of Public Works and the Maryland Department of the Environment are also cooperating in the littering investigation. The public works department came by and picked up the tires on Wednesday morning, Haines said.
“It’s just disgraceful to see someone dump all that trash down there,” St. Mary’s River Watershed Association Director Bob Lewis, who was also called to the scene of the dump last week, said, adding the amount of tires shows the dump originated from a commercial source.
“That means people like you and I are paying to have those dumped over the guard rail,” he said.
Lewis estimated about 200 tires were disposed of there. Haines estimated there were several hundred tires on her property.
“It’s a bad thing to have happened,” John Dietrick, the county’s public works director, said.
“It pollutes chemically and environmentally” being in the waterway, he said. “We want to take care of this beautiful county.”
Dietrick said the county had produced an action plan for the removal of the tires after they had been discovered last week.
Scrap tires can be taken to St. Andrew’s Landfill in California, where they are collected and hauled to a processing facility. Up to five passenger car tires are free, and commercial haulers pay $158 per ton of tires, according to the department of public works’ website.
Sheriff’s office spokesperson Cpl. Julie Yingling said police are investigating the massive pile of litter, which joined another recent tire dump off Whitaker Road in St. Inigoes that police are also investigating after multiple callers made reports.
Those with information on the tire dumping are asked to contact Dfc. Matthew Beyer at 301-475-4200, ext. 78005, or email at email@example.com.