Matt Phelps Fay Lim
Communications Specialist II Communications Supervisor
Snohomish County’s Litter Wranglers Return to County Roads for 2022 Season
Resident participation key to program’s continued success
EVERETT, Wash., June 6, 2022 – There are many ways to quantify the impact of the Snohomish County Litter Wranglers program through statistics – like the nearly 6,000 bags of garbage it removed from county right of ways during the 2021 season. However, the best way to see their impact is the preservation of the county’s natural beauty and environmental health as the crew hits the streets this spring and summer for its fifth season in six years.
“The Litter Wranglers were originally deployed to fix a widespread problem throughout Snohomish County—trash on the side of the road—and they have exceeded our highest expectations,” said Snohomish County Executive Dave Somers. “This innovative program is an example of how creative problem solving can fix some of our most pressing needs and reinforce some of our highest values.”
The Litter Wranglers returned in 2021 after being paused in 2020 due to the global pandemic. The team almost set a new program record by collecting nearly 6,000 bags of trash despite having one less member than in 2019.
“It is astonishing what this program has accomplished in such a short time,” Snohomish County Public Works Director Kelly Snyder said. “During just four seasons the Litter Wranglers have removed nearly 23,000 bags of trash.”
The partnership between the Litter Wranglers and residents helps to guide the program. Calls and emails from the public reporting litter sites contribute to the Litter Wranglers’ success. The information is then compiled and sites are grouped together to collect the material as efficiently as possible. The system maximizes the crew’s work on the road to get the most out of their time.
The crew has been able to get a site cleaned within a week of a report from the public. Snohomish County residents can participate in the program by continuing to report areas with excessive litter.
Report a litter location by:
Litter Wranglers also clean work sites before Public Works’ maintenance crews arrive for projects. This allows expert maintenance crews to stay focused on road maintenance tasks and be more efficient, saving taxpayers’ money.
The county-employed Litter Wrangler crew of four to six members is trained on how to safely deal with trash while working along the road next to traffic. Residents may see the Litter Wranglers between 6:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Thursday throughout the county until November. Snyder reminds drivers to be aware and cautious while driving through construction and road maintenance zones this summer to keep everyone safe.
Residents can also participate in picking up litter by joining the county’s Adopt-A-Road program, which is a partnership between volunteers and Snohomish County Public Works to keep roadsides free of litter. To sign-up for the program, call the program coordinator at 425-388-3137.
About Snohomish County Public Works
Snohomish County Public Works is responsible for approximately 1,600 miles of county roads, more than 200 bridges and manages about 200 traffic control signals. The department also processes nearly 600,000 tons of garbage per year. Its mission is to focus on safety and mobility while practicing fiscal responsibility and preserving the environment. Public Works has won numerous state and national honors for its work and is the largest department within Snohomish County government with approximately 500 employees plus seasonal staff. Its main office is located at 3000 Rockefeller Ave., Everett, WA 98201.
Visit www.snohomishcountywa.gov/PublicWorks or follow the department on Facebook and Twitter for more
information about Snohomish County Public Works.