PA CleanWays Dump Site Surveys

In 2009, PA CleanWays approached the Cambria County Solid Waste Authority with a project that they had been working on throughout the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania - ride every road, find every site. The project goes county by county with individuals and agencies taking the time to ride every road in order to find the extent of the illegal dumping activity. Needless to say, the project was vast, as was the scope of the dumping activity.



Beginning in October 2009, the Solid Waste Authority began our part to survey the roads within Cambria County. With tools in hand, we set out to discover what was out there. Within the past few years, we had done spot survey work on our own and had a good idea of what was out there...or so we thought. Since our last County-wide surveying effort, our total tally of dump sites has increased. In 2006, the number of known sites was in the mid-70s. At the date of this page's publication, the tally has risen to well over 130 sites with nearly 3/4 of the County surveyed. Though it does not seem that there are that many new sites out there, this thorough and methodical search of every roadway is yielding greater numbers than anticipated. On the plus side, we know where everything is, how to get there, and what exactly is at each site. On the down side, we have 130 sites with only 3/4 of the County surveyed.

The survey work does not send us out with just car keys and a cup of coffee. Each of us is using a variety of tools to document each individual site better than ever before. Aside from various maps, we are equipped with digital cameras to take pictures of each site, the material present, and the area surrounding the site for future reference. We are also carrying GPS units to document the precise latitude and longitude at each location, giving never-before-used accuracy to our mapping work. In addition, each site is thoroughly cataloged using a standardized form. Information logged is extensive, but includes:

  • Name, roadway, municipality, coordinates, directions to the site
  • Distance to nearest town, residences, area demographics, traffic density, type of roadway
  • Description of terrain, age of site, site characteristics
  • Materials present at the site, including precise numbers of tires, appliances, furniture, carcasses, etc.
  • Clean-up estimates including amount of material, obstacles to clean-up, clean-up difficulty
  • Recommendations to stop future activity including mounding, guard rails, patrols, education and closing the area

Each site is cataloged exactly the same and the information is sent back to PA CleanWays in efforts to build a database and plan of 'attack' to clean up the roads. Through help from volunteer organizations, local municipalities, and solid waste entities, PA CleanWays plans to help rid the Commonwealth of this blight and insure that dumping activity stops.

To view the most current map of dump sites surveyed, please click here.

In April of 2010, the PA CleanWays survey project for Cambria County was completed. The information has been compiled and is available to download (.pdf file) by clicking here.

*Please note: Specific roads are listed in the illegal dumpsite report, but specific locations are not. The Authority is aware of the contents of each site. Those who would seek to use this report as a roadmap to dumping will be prosecuted and may be held liable for not only the trash they contribute, but for all of the contents of the site. In a few words, don't do it!

If you have information about a dump site in Cambria County, please contact the Cambria County Solid Waste Authority at 814-472-2109, toll-free at 1-877-237-6748, or via email by clicking here. Tips are always appreciated and may be made anonymous. (Please note that we can not intervene with 'neighborly' disputes. Please contact your local municipality for assistance.)
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