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Regional Illegal Dumping Patrol

Garbage and recycling    Stop illegal dumping

Find out how Metro's RID Patrol tackles the problem of illegal dumping on public property. Report illegal dumpers online or call 503-234-3000.

Help prevent illegal dumping

Report illegal dumping
Call Metro's RID Patrol at 503-234-3000 or report online.

Report illegal dumping online

If you see illegal dumpers
Do not confront them; call local police. Note vehicle's license plate number, make and model, material dumped and location.

Stop waste before it starts
Do not abandon unwanted items at street corners; reduce, reuse or recycle. Call Metro's Recycling Information hotline for help at 503-234-3000.

Take responsibility for your trash
Use legitimate garbage haulers or take it to an authorized facility.

Other steps you can take:

  1. Make hidden areas less attractive with lighting, low- or see-through fencing or landscaping
  2. Show would-be offenders you care about your surroundings
  3. Educate and involve neighbors to increase safety and security

You've seen the signs. You know the message. Illegal dumping is prohibited and violators face a stiff penalty. To the surprise of many, those signs aren't just an idle threat.

Since 1993, Metro's RID Patrol has been tackling the problem of illegal dumping by cleaning up dump sites, investigating evidence found there, issuing citations to guilty parties and working with local law enforcement agencies to educate people and help them reduce dumping in their neighborhoods.

The dangers of illegal dumps

Trash, old appliances, torn mattresses, used tires, broken furniture, oil, antifreeze and pesticides are but a few of the things illegal dumpers leave on public lands and sidewalks, in alleyways and waterways. Illegal dumps diminish the quality of life and threaten human health and wildlife in the region.

Children playing in or around dumps can be injured. Old tires can become breeding grounds for mosquitoes and other noxious insects. Some dumps become home to rodents. Illegal dumps lower the value of homes and the land around them.

Metro is working hard on the problem, but there are things residents and business owners can do to help.

Alert the RID Patrol 

Watch for and report illegal dumpers. Write down license plates and other identifying information. You can report online or by calling Metro Recycling Information at 503-234-3000.

Beware of “freelance” haulers

You could become the victim of con artists who dump your trash illegally. The result could be an environmental eyesore and even a citation and fine for the resident who was only trying to save a few dollars.

Metro recommends using only franchised or permitted haulers to get rid of waste. That way, you can be sure your garbage is being disposed of properly, safely and legally. Residents who do use a freelance hauler should take the following precautions:

  • get the person’s name and vehicle license number
  • insist that the hauler produce a dated receipt from a legitimate disposal facility prior to final payment
  • pay by check, rather than cash.

RID Patrol investigation and cleanup

Metro works closely with other local government agencies and local law enforcement to assure that illegal dumps are quickly and thoroughly cleaned up and investigated. Investigating officers will try to locate the owner of the trash and track down the illegal hauler. Depending on the situation, the owners of the trash may be fined or cited, along with the hauler who dumped illegally. Fines are issued to cover the cost of cleaning up and properly managing waste from dump sites. Multnomah County inmate crews assigned to Metro from the Inverness Jail clean up sites throughout much of the region.

Metro provides illegal dump cleanup services on publicly owned land. Metro can assist private property owners with investigation of illegal dumps on private property.

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In 2012, Metro cleaned up 196 tons of waste from more than 1,970 dump sites. The waste included more than 1,560 old tires.  Hazardous waste and/or used syringes were found at 54 sites.

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503-797-1804 TDD
503-797-1797 fax