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Eye On Olympia

Of “trucker bombs” and other foul finds…

The Legislature has passed a bill that broadens the definition of “potentially hazardous litter.”
Provided that Gov. Locke signs the bill, that means that people littering with lit cigarettes, glass, nails, tacks, bottles, hypodermic needles or “raw human waste” will face up to a $500 fine.
Raw human waste may not seem like it would be high on the list of things to hurl out the window of a speeding car, but apparently it is. Youth litter crews, according to bill sponsor Dave Upthegrove, D-Des Moines, picked up thousands of so-called trucker bombs by Washington’s roadsides last year.
“Some truckers, in order to avoid losing valuable time by stopping at a rest area, often relive themselves in bottles and throw them by the side of the road,” he explained.
The bill includes one other change: it removes the widely-ignored state requirement that drivers keep a litter bag in their cars.
“We are more concerned with what people throw out their windows, not what they do with the garbage inside their car,” said Upthegrove.

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Richard Roesler covers Washington state news from The Spokesman-Review's bureau in Olympia.

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