WisDOT reminding drivers to watch for Adopt-A-Highway crews on Wisconsin roadsides

For the Tomahawk Leader

WISCONSIN – The Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT) is reminding drivers to stay alert and give space to Adopt-A-Highway volunteers, who routinely collect trash and recyclables along state highways.

“Each year, Wisconsinites generously take time out of their schedules to pick up trash and recyclables along the roadside,” said WisDOT Secretary Craig Thompson. “Last year, we saw a phenomenal increase in participation in the Adopt-A-Highway program, as nearly 15,000 volunteers helped clean Wisconsin roadsides. We are grateful for their commitment and pride to keep our state beautiful, yet we still urge all drivers to properly dispose of trash.”

According to WisDOT, in 2023, Wisconsin Adopt-A-Highway groups collected 180 tons of trash and recyclables.​

“Nearly 15,000 volunteers helped pick up trash last year, which is a significant increase from 11,000 volunteers in 2022,” WisDOT stated, adding that it is encouraging more people to get involved.

WisDOT’s interactive map (www.tinyurl.com/3dtz4zc7) shows highway segments maintained by Wisconsin’s 3,000 Adopt-A-Highway groups, but more than 2,300 miles of state highway are still available for adoption.

“Adopt-A-Highway workers are asked to clean up their assigned two-mile state highway segment at least three times per year,” WisDOT said. “County highway crews gather the bagged materials for proper disposal. Automated forms on the Adopt-A-Highway website streamline reporting cleanup efforts.”

As part of the program, WisDOT furnishes safety vests, highway worker signs, a safety training video, trash bags and two permanent signs identifying the group.

Each group must provide one adult supervisor for every five or six volunteers. Groups do not work in dangerous areas like medians, bridges or steep slopes.

“WisDOT reminds drivers to buckle up, put the phone down and follow speed limits on Wisconsin highways, especially when these volunteer groups are working along the roadside,” WisDOT stated.

Learn more at www.wisconsindot.gov/adoptahighway and watch a video about the Adopt-A-Highway program at www.tinyurl.com/5n8484vp.

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