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'It's shocking that people do not care': Tire hunters fight dumping along Susquehanna River

This group is pulling tons of tires and junk out of our waters. Now, they want you to join them.

PENNSYLVANIA, USA — If you ask John Naylor what shocks him most about what he finds along the Susquehanna River, he says "it's shocking that people just do not care."

On the water, Naylor has picked out more than 16,000 pieces of plastic, countless 5-quart used motor oil containers, and most recently he has started a fundraiser to fish out dozens of tires. 

"We all have a stake in it. We can all do something," he said, as he noted the junk also flows damage to the Chesapeake Bay. "But, so many do so little. It's just, that is shocking to me."

Throughout the month of June, Naylor has made it his mission to complete what he calls a "100 Tire Challenge" with all the proceeds supporting patrolling operations of the Lower Susquehanna Riverkeeper. Anyone is invited to join Naylor and his friends. It's kicking off a long list of other events where volunteers and fundraising are needed throughout the year.

"These tires specifically, they do a lot more harm than plastic," Lower Susquehanna Riverkeeper, Ted Evgeniadis, said while leaning against the piled stack of nearly 30 tires the group found just that day. "These tires are made out petroleum. They have heavy metals with them. So, when these break down you're going to have more of an effect to wildlife, avian species, fish, us, because we eat the fish."

Evgeniadis noted the anger and frustration he feels watching the results of illegal dumping on the river. Both Naylor and Evgeniadis agree however that humans are the solution to the ongoing pollution problems they find on the banks. 

"I really believe the Susquehanna River and our environment in general is at a tipping point," Naylor said, who then added, "And of course, that goes down to the Chesapeake Bay and the Chesapeake Bay is in peril."

Here's how you can help:

100 Tire Challenge to support the Lower Susquehanna Riverkeeper

Contact the Lower Susquehanna Riverkeeper to get involved here.

Download the FOX43 app here.

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