FRANKLIN COUNTY, PA - A rusted piece of metal, bags of discarded clothes and glass were just some of the things volunteers picked up along the Conococheague Creek Saturday morning. The clean-up was an annual event put on by state Senator Richard Alloway and two non-profit organizations, Conococheague Watershed Alliance and the Antietam Watershed Association.
According to Senator Alloway, this is the third year for the event, and even though the streams seem cleaner, Senator Alloway says what he has seen over the years concerns him.
"Last year we actually pulled out a tire that was the biggest tire I've ever seen in my life," says Senator Alloway. "It was actually taller than me," he says.
About 30 volunteers picked up trash along the Conocochegue Greenway Trail in Chambersburg; some volunteers even went into to creek.
Jim Golden was one of the volunteers. Golden was fighting to remove what looked like a part of a car from the creek, along with other rusted metal along the banks. Golden brought his daughter along with him for the clean-up hoping she would learn to be a better care-taker of the environment.
"I think they don't know any better," says Golden, a reference to the people who have left trash along the creek. "A normal person wouldn't discard clothes or plastic in [the creek], he says."
According to Senator Alloway, there is a fine and potential jail time if someone is caught littering, but since it's very hard to enforce the rule, the senator and members of the Conococheague Watershed Alliance are encouraging people to think of the consequences, like fish dying from pollutants in creeks.
"If you're putting chemicals on your lawn, make sure you do it in the appropriate manner and not add pollutants that will eventually run-off into the streams and flow into the Potomac and affects the ocean as well," says Bob Moore with the Conococheague Watershed Alliance.
Organizers say the non-profit is one of the groups that work to protect local creeks. If you would like more information on the Conococheague Watershed Alliance, click here.