Arrow-right Camera

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
Partly Cloudy Night 36° Partly Cloudy

Outdoors blog

‘Litterpigs’ turn Liberty Lake vault toilet into nasty money pit

Garbage fills a large portion of a vault toilet at the Liberty Lake public access site managed by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife.  (Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife)
Garbage fills a large portion of a vault toilet at the Liberty Lake public access site managed by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife. (Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife)

PUBLIC LANDS -- Litterbug is a term that seems too tame and harmless to describe the buttheads who deposit garbage in public vault toilets.

The collective insolence of "litterpigs" at the Liberty Lake public access has forced the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife to spend more than three times the normal fee for vault toilet service and pumping.

Instead of just sewage, which workers are equipped to handle, the two toilets were about half full of garbage, making the service job particularly nasty.

Daniel Dziekan, the agency's access manager, said two septic system companies wouldn't take on the job because of the amount of garbage.

The public paid the price. Dziekan had to spend $1,500 per toilet to the company that finally accepted the job. The cost normally is about $400-500.

On average, Dziekan said he might pick out one or two bags full of garbage from a pit toilet servicing operation.

At Liberty Lake, he collected 35 bags full of poopy pop and beer cans and assorted trash from the two vault toilets.

Litterpigs suck.

All state fishing access sites (and most federal facilities) are signed “Pack it in, pack it out,” and toilets have signs in and on them about no garbage in the vault.

"Liberty Lake gets LOTS of use by non-fishers, such as jet skiers and other recreational boaters, so it takes a lot of $35 Discover passes to cover the cost of things like this," said Madonna Luers, department spokeswoman in Spokane.



Rich Landers
Rich Landers joined The Spokesman-Review in 1977. He is the Outdoors editor for the Sports Department writing and photographing stories about hiking, hunting, fishing, boating, conservation, nature and wildlife and related topics.

Follow Rich online:




Go to the full Outdoors page