A group of volunteers came together with a crane, mini-excavator, flatbed trucks and many other tools for a surprise clean-up of a burned-out trailer, motorhome and car that had been abandoned at the Carmi Rec Trail parking lot in Penticton.
“Huge shout out to volunteers from G Little Electric, Barry Beecroft Fuel, TAP Contracting and Resurface Solutions for cleaning up the Carmi Recreation Trails parking lot,” wrote the Carmi Rec Trails group on Facebook. “Amazing people.”
The Carmi Rec Trail volunteer group had planned a clean-up of the parking lot on May 15, but this group of volunteers came and saved the day on Sunday (today), said Neda Joss of Carmi Rec Trails.
“They managed to haul out the burned trailer, motorhome and car on flatbed trucks and took it to Action Steel. They managed to haul out a dump of wood ends and various garbage. Thank you so much for being stewards of the land,” Joss posted to Facebook.
“We have been trying to get these recreation vehicles removed since last summer. The trailer was 27 feet long. The motor home was very similar in length. The trailer was brought up last summer by a squatter who vacated and left it. I don’t know the story behind the motor home but it was burned around the same time the trailer was in late fall,” said Foss.
There was also an abandoned car that was removed.
There is no provincial funding or service to remove these abandoned trailers. Removal is dependent on volunteers such as those who came up on Sunday, said Joss.
Removal is one challenge. The other is trying to find somewhere to deposit the vehicles.
Steel frames can’t go to the landfill and can only go to a salvage company. The landfill will take the general refuse but it needs to be sorted and recycled.
“We are fortunate, and grateful, that RDOS is in support of illegal dump cleanups and waives tipping fees. This is huge considering that this illegal dumpsite was not in RDOS jurisdiction but on Crown land. This particular area is a constant cleanup area because of its close location to town and easy access for such [dumping] activities,” Foss said.
The volunteer group said the area has always been a dumping ground and a popular spot for squatters. There are some squatters in various parts of the forested Crown land.
“We have no problem with squatters as long as they clean up after themselves. We had one woman here who left her camp spotless,” she said.
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