Flood Warning issued October 1 at 10:09AM EDT expiring October 4 at 2:00AM EDT in effect for: Sarasota
Trash. Lots and lots of trash.
"When you're coming down the street and the first thing you see is this," Lisa Wheeler-Brown pointed. "Something's wrong."
For the past month, Wheeler-Brown has been photographing the growing problem behind her St. Pete home.
She lives in Wildwood Heights on an alley with three community dumpsters intended for the few homes that surround them. But instead, she says people have been traveling to her street just to take out their trash - ignoring the tattered "no dumping" sign warning them it's illegal.
"I'm very fed up," Wheeler-Brown said. "Who is going to want to invest in our community? Who is going to want to live in a neighborhood where you ride down the street and all you see is trash?"
Over the past year, she says her community has complained. Each time, the sanitation department comes out and cleans up the garbage. But without fail, she says the piles return.
ABC Action News is taking action. We took her concerns, and her pictures, straight to Benjamin Shirley - the city's sanitation director.
According to Shirley, if people who do not live in that neighborhood are really the ones doing the dumping that is definitely illegal. Someone caught illegally dumping could face anything from fines all the way up to jail time depending upon the circumstances.
"It is a big offense. And if you're doing it, we will catch you," said Shirley.
He advised the neighbors to contact the sanitation department and file a formal complaint. His unit has an environmental detective that will look into the problem.
If you are facing a similar situation within the St. Pete city limits call the illegal dumping tip line at 727-892-5000.
You can also go here for more information.