New way to collect river trash coming to downtown Tampa

Posted at 4:43 PM, Aug 03, 2016
and last updated 2016-08-03 17:44:31-04
You may have noticed trash washing up near the Riverwalk in downtown Tampa. Thunderstorms and downpours can push it from the streets into the Hillsborough River. 
Keep Tampa Bay Beautiful may have found a new way to collect unwanted litter. It's a problem runners like Curtis LeVan notice. 
"A lot of plastics, a lot of bottles, Gatorade bottles or you know soda bottles, it's actually pretty frustrating," LeVan said. 
"I've actually seen dolphins come up this way that far too and you know just wondering how it hurts the wildlife as well as all the birds so yeah it's very alarming," LeVan said. 
During the rainy season, the debris seems to double. The Keep Tampa Bay Beautiful executive director said the rain washes trash into the river. 
"The storm drains are protections so the flooding doesn't happen on land and what it does it washes litter off land into our water ways there's no filter in the storm drains," executive director Debbie Evenson said. 
The trash gets caught in rocks and mangroves, but thanks to a grant, Keep Tampa Bay Beautiful will be able to buy sea bins. They draw trash in and store it for a month, which is a big help to the group's five-person clean-up team. 
"They only have to be emptied once a month which is a lot easier than going out weekly to do clean ups so we're going to see how much trash they do collect for us and if it does make an impact in our area," Evenson said. 
They're hoping to get the bins at the beginning of next year to help get junk out of the water and where it belongs. 
Volunteers are essential to the cleanup process and the next big clean up is happening in September.