KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A tip to city’s illegal dumping hotline helped investigators identify a man who poured concrete down the drain of a car wash.
This unusual case of dumping shut down the business, located at Longview Road and Winchester Avenue. It’s hard to operate a car wash if you can’t drain away the water and soap used to clean cars.
“This is a problem we’ve had before where people around the city, they do a cement job, and they clean out the cement mixers in the city drains,” Alan Ashurst, illegal dumping investigator, said. “When that stuff drys, now you’ve got these big globs of concrete.”
That’s exactly what happened last week after someone decided to rinse out a cement mixer in one of the car wash bays, dumping the concrete down the drain.
After surveillance images of the truck and mixer appeared on FOX4, a tipster called the city’s 513-DUMP hotline with a license plate number that led investigators to Melvin Jordan.
“People are opportunists,” said Dennis Nash, the car wash owner. “I think when it happens, they don’t really care. But once they get caught, yeah, it matters then.”
Jordan faces a $1,000 fine for illegal dumping. Nash said he’s working with Jordan to clear the drains for all his car wash bays. None can be used because of the cement clog.
Nash told FOX4 he deals with illegal dumpers all the time. He said they seem to think it’s OK to unload their trash at the car wash while they’re cleaning their vehicles. This, however, is the first time someone’s mess has shut down his business.
Ashurst said this is the way the 513-DUMP hotline is supposed to work, with the community helping investigators with specific information that leads the city to identify and prosecute illegal dumpers.