Do your part
Do not abandon your unwanted items at street corners. Find out how to dispose of unwanted items safely and legally. Ask Metro at 503-234-3000 or search Metro's online tool to find recycling or disposal options near you.
Report rather than confront
If you see illegal dumpers in the act, do not confront them; call local police. Note the vehicle's license plate number, make and model, material dumped and location.
Report an illegal dump site
Tags warn dumpers and encourage proper disposal
You may have spotted a bright orange tag on an abandoned mattress at the end of your street or taped to an old washer in an alley. The tags:
- educate neighbors that abandoning bulky items on public property is illegal
- warn dumpers that they must dispose of items properly or risk prosecution
- reduce cleanup cost to Metro’s ratepayers by urging those who have left abandoned items to retrieve them or be fined.
If the tagged item has not been removed within about a week, Metro's crew will collect and dispose of it properly.
The dangers of illegal dumps
Illegal dumps threaten human health and wildlife in the region. Trash, old appliances, torn mattresses, used tires, broken furniture, yard debris, oil, antifreeze and pesticides are a few of the things illegal dumpers leave on public lands and sidewalks, in alleyways and waterways.
Beware of “freelance” haulers
Don’t become the victim of con artists who offer to haul waste to a disposal site, and then dump your trash illegally. The result could be an environmental eyesore and even a fine for the resident who was only trying to save a few dollars.
Use only franchised or permitted haulers to get rid of waste to ensure sure your garbage is being disposed of properly, safely and legally. If you do choose to use a freelance hauler, take these precautions:
- Get the person’s name and vehicle license number.
- Insist that the hauler produce a dated receipt from a legitimate disposal or recycling facility prior to final payment.
- Pay by check, rather than cash.
Metro provides illegal dump cleanup services on publicly owned land. Metro can also assist private property owners with investigation of illegal dumps on private property.
About Metro's RID Patrol
Since 1993, Metro has worked closely with other local government agencies and law enforcement to quickly and thoroughly investigate and remove illegal dumps. Metro’s investigating officers will try to locate the owner of the trash and its illegal hauler. Depending on the situation, the owner of the trash may be fined or cited, along with the hauler who dumped illegally. Fines 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.