Dangerous road debris littering Florida highways putting thousands of drivers at risk daily

Posted at 3:20 AM, Mar 14, 2018
and last updated 2018-03-14 06:23:39-04

Dangerous debris dump onto Florida highways and interstates puts your family at risk.

Rob Lee is a Road Ranger Supervisor for the Florida Department of Transportation. He is used to seeing drivers dodging debris.

"It happens daily," Lee said.

Part of his job is to get the trash and debris out of traffic lanes so you do not hit it.

Once Good Morning Tampa Bay's Lindsay Logue hears about it, she tweets it out and tells you about it on air so you can look out for it.

"A lot of the time the items that are dropped, the person that dropped them just continue on and they don’t stop to try and remove it themselves," said Lee.

"A bungee cord a piece of rope anything," said Jason Scoggins, a driver who has all of that in the back of his truck. "A ladder could fall off, bounce up and come right through your front windshield and kill your kid or yourself."

That is the reason Scoggins doesn't take any chances. He knows other peoples lives are at risk when he is transporting stuff for work.

Last April, crews contracted to collect trash on FDOT-monitored highways picked up mounds of trash in one week. Workers removed things like couches, mattresses, tires, wood and shopping carts.

The Tampa Hillsborough Expressway Authority recently wrote an article about Selmon Expressway maintenance crews finding a lot of road debris near the Gandy Boulevard exits.

During the first three months of 2017 crews cleaned up more than 42 tons of debris on state highways in the Tampa Bay area. Taxpayers picked up the $2,800 bill. 

"You can’t just throw things in the back of your vehicle and expect it to stay," said Scoggins. "Wind and everything picks it up and it could take it and you could kill somebody‘s family. You could cause somebody to have a wreck."

FDOT is urging people to take a look at the Florida statues on how to properly secure stuff in the back of your truck or on the top of your roof and the limitations you need to be aware of: