ATASCADERO — Over 50 participants turned out for the 24th Annual Atascadero River and Creek Clean-up, according to the Atascadero Mutual Water Company.

During the three-hour event, the SLO Beaver Brigade brought in six truckloads of trash from the Salinas River’s southern section.

The Atascadero Land Preservation brought in several truckloads from the San Gabriel Road portion of Atascadero Creek and a group from Atascadero Bible Church cleaning Atascadero Creek on the west side of Highway 101.

At the end of the event, a 20-yard dumpster was filled with waste, which is 540 cubic feet or about the size of a backyard swimming pool. Two 10-yard dumpsters collected scrap metal and tires. This year organizers saw a rise of dumped household batteries, which can leach toxic chemicals into the soil when they break down. Other items were shopping carts, propane tanks, and sharps waste.

The River and Creek Clean-up is held annually in early Fall to remove trash before the first rain or “first flush” to prevent debris and toxic materials from entering local waterways.

Atascadero Mutual Water Company and the City of Atascadero thanked the Atascadero Land Preservation, SLO Beaver Brigade, Atascadero Waste Alternatives, and Chicago Grade Landfill for their participation and generosity over the past 24 years.

Getting through this together, Atascadero