California Department of Transportation

California Department of Transportation

Headquarters – Sacramento
Matt Rocco

April 22, 2010


Sacramento - On Earth Day, Caltrans today held its annual Litter Pick Up Day at the State Capitol as its workers were out statewide picking up litter, trash, and debris.

“We ask for the public’s help in this battle against litter,” said Cindy McKim, Chief Deputy Director. “Our message to the public is 'Don't Trash California'."

Last spring, Caltrans workers removed more than 4,000 cubic yards of trash from state highways on Litter Pick Up Day.

One way the public can help is by participating in Caltrans’ Adopt-A-Highway Program. To become a volunteer or support the program through a paid sponsorship, call 1-866-ADOPT-A-HWY or go to: Last year, Caltrans and its 3,300 Adopt-A-Highway volunteer groups cleaned over 130,000 miles along California’s highways.

Litter cost millions of dollars each year to clean up – money that could otherwise be spent on transportation projects, schools, housing, and social services. Caltrans alone spent $60 million last year to remove more than 160,000 cubic yards of litter, trash, and debris from state highways – enough to fill 10,000 Caltrans garbage trucks, stretching 52 miles.

Cigarette butts are the number one item littered in California --they are discarded by the millions, often causing roadside fires, clogging storm drains, and threatening our water quality and wildlife. In addition, motorists face the risk of accident, injury, and death as the result of trash and other debris on California’s highways that has most likely fallen from vehicles hauling unsecured loads or been carelessly tossed by unthinking drivers.