Riverkeeper scouting for second Washington trash-trap location

Environmental, Litter-Free Rivers, Sound Rivers, Stormwater Runoff, Tar-Pamlico Watershed, Volunteer, Volunteers, Water Quality

Posted on May 23rd, 2024

A potential location for second Washington trash trap on a tributary of Jack's Creek, near the Sixth Street Park tennis courts.

Pamlico-Tar Riverkeeper Katey Zimmerman is seeking another location for a trash trap in Washington.

On Tuesday, Katey and Swim Guide intern Tierney Reardon headed out to search for the best location that would not only be easy to get to, but also capture plenty of trash floating downstream toward the Pamlico River.

“There are a couple of different criteria that we use in trying to find a good spot for a trash trap: the accessibility of the creek — if volunteers are going to be able to get in and get out of the creek safely — and a lot of the time that is in relation to how steep the creek bank is,” Katey said. “The width of the creek matters because we don’t want it to be too wide, so we don’t have ridiculously long wires and a million buoys strung across the water, and the amount of flow. We don’t want it to be super, super fast, but we don’t want it to be stagnant water either because we want the trap to actually catch some trash for our volunteers to clean out.”

Another site scouted was this one, near the East Fourth Street dog park.

Katey introduced Tierney to the existing trash trap on Jack’s Creek near Market Street, then the two scouted four other locations, all on small tributaries of Jack’s Creek: one near the tennis courts in the Sixth Street Park; two adjacent to the dog park on East Fourth Street and another just north of Park Drive.

Sound Rivers’ Litter-Free Rivers program currently has five trash traps installed in the Neuse and Tar-Pamlico watersheds: on Jack’s Creek in Washington, Duffyfield Canal in New Bern, Little Rock Creek in Raleigh, Adkin Branch in Kinston and Greensmill Run in Greenville. In addition to a second Washington location, Sound Rivers working to install three more: two in Raleigh and one in Tarboro.

Would your group like to volunteer to clean out a trash trap? We’d be happy to have your help! Email Volunteer Coordinator Emily Fritz at!

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