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Illegal Dumping Poses Danger for Kids

Posted at 6:57 PM, Feb 17, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-17 19:57:35-05

TULSA, Okla. — Trash blowing out of the Springdale Shopping Center located at 1538 N Lewis Ave, Tulsa, OK 74110 is causing more than a stick. The nearby community says it's endangering children.

Going to the Springdale Park is one of Zelta and her two granddaughters favorite past times, but recently, they have not enjoyed it as much.

“On nice days like today, we come up if the kids are out of school," Zelta said. "But we end up picking up all the trash that we see on the playground."

Most days they find chip wrappers or cigarette butts but some days they find trash that is far more dangerous.

"We’ve found syringes and other drug paraphernalia," Zelta said. "We’ve found all kinds of stuff up here.”

Which makes Zelta worried and upset.

“It makes me mad, it really does because it’s not the kids fault and some of that crap could kill them," Zelta said. “They are my life my kids, and my grandkids are my life."

Zelta says the constant trash blowing over to the park from Springdale Shopping Mall encourages more people to letter in the park.

"People just don't care out here. It makes me so mad," Zelta said.

Kaled Shehada owns a restaurant in the Springdale Shopping Center. He agrees with Zelta's concerns, but says with the criminals in the area, there isn't much he can do.

"I have my own dumpster, and I pay $51 each month," Shehada said. "I asked for a lock for it and I had it for a couple of months then they [criminals] broke it then I called the dumpster people and they came back to replace it and a couple of months ago they broke the lock again."

Shehada says people illegally throw trash behind his business and next to his dumpster.

“I don’t know what to do to be honest," Shehada said. "I talked to the owner and he says he has been doing what he can."

Springdale Strip Mall owner Brad Sanditen says their company spends thousands a year trying to clean up the illegally dumped trash up.

“We call to have a crew pick it up whenever a tenant notifies us and because its our private property, we have to pay every time it’s hauled," Sanditen said.

But Sanditen says the crews they hire just can’t keep up.

"It is frustrating because there isn’t much we can do about it," Sandeltin said.

So, until people just stop littering, Zelta will keep a close, worried eye on her grandkids while they play until the mess gets too bad for them to come back.

"I’s ridiculous,"Zelta said. "There are trash cans or keep your trash with you. Don’t just throw your crap down. It's very dangerous for kids."

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