On Sunday, the Outpost was sent the above video, which shows some human garbage brazenly dumping a truckload of literal garbage at the intersection of Vance Avenue and State Route 255, just south of Manila on the Samoa Peninsula.
The videographer, who asked to be identified only as David from Manila, said in a message, “Clearly they’re using the sign as an anchor and put something at the very front of the bed attached to a strap or rope, so everything comes out when they drive away.”
The sign in question reads “Dumping Prohibited.”
On Monday morning, Humboldt Bay Harbor District employees Robert Provolt and Roberto Theian were onsite, cleaning up the garbage with help from a Manila residents Bobby Wright and Jennifer Savage, who is California policy manager for the environmental nonprofit Surfrider Foundation.
Provolt said that among the garbage they’d found mail and court documents with names and addresses.
“Yeah, we’ve got three different names so far,” he said. Provolt plans to turn that information over to his boss. The pile of refuse included large garbage bags filled with household waste (clothing, food wrappers, a handwritten shopping list, a 3 Doors Down CD, etc.) along with broken furniture, scrap metal, empty motor oil cans and more. “This almost looks like a landlord cleared somebody out,” Provolt said. “A slumlord.”
Theian said people dump garbage on the peninsula “all the time,” especially along Vance Avenue. The Harbor District takes turns cleaning up the messes with other agencies, such as the PacOut Green Team, a nonprofit community group dedicated to picking up litter.
Pam Halstead, a member of the Peninsula Community Collaborative, agreed that the problem is chronic. “My husband and I have been picking up trash daily along Vance for the past two years plus,” she said.
Just last week her organization placed large boulders along Vance in hopes of cutting down on the illegal dumping.
The PacOut Green Team took to Facebook yesterday in hopes of identifying the culprits of this latest dump. They posted photos of the garbage, along with some long-distance shots of the maroon pickup truck.
A number of angry commenters theorized that the garbage was connected to a nearby homeless camp, but the page’s administrator said, “[W]e suspect it was not from a homeless person. Most of the trash we deal with are from ‘housed’ people.”
The Outpost reached out to the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office to ask whether anyone has reported more info about this incident. We’ll update if we hear anything of substance.
UPDATE, 1:25 p.m.: Halstead sent along the following post-cleanup photo, and she said the sign has since been straightened.