JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A local property manager says he found hundreds of tires dumped on vacant land he oversees — tires that piled more than 5 feet high, according to Danny McClain.
McClain has managed the abandoned marina on Trout River Drive for years. He said he found the pile of tires the day after Christmas.
“This is wrong any way you look at it,” McClain said. “Whoever did it is wrong.”
McClain said the pile doubled the next day. “I think it’s very lowlife for somebody to — the mosquito control and all the problems,” McClain said, “I just think it’s bad.”
When McClain went digging for answers, he found a shipping label showing the load of tires had been shipped to a business called Coast 2 Coast Customs. “I had to go through and look to find out,” McClain said.
Coast 2 Coast provided the News4JAX I-TEAM a receipt showing they paid Florida United Tire $245 on Friday to haul a load of 80 tires. The manager said Florida United Tire picks up a load of old tires to dispose of them every week with no problem.
Florida United Tire is part of Steve’s Tire Empire. “Everything we do is above and beyond,” owner Steve Landers said.
Landers brought out receipts to show the I-TEAM that his business pays hundreds of dollars to recyclers to shred old tires they’ve collected.
The I-TEAM asked Landers if he thought one of his employees went rogue and pocketed the money. “No, absolutely not,” Landers said, “...because they’re paid with checks.” He said it wouldn’t be worth it to lose his business by illegally dumping tires to save a few hundred dollars.
McClain said something needs to be done to prevent it from happening again on his property. “I’m afraid they’re going to be a third day and a fourth day. When will it stop?” McClain said.
Shortly after we spoke with Landers, he came back and said his driver confessed to dumping the tires on the vacant lot. He said his driver had been paid in cash over the weekend because Landers was not working over the holiday.
Landers sent a crew to clean up the tires from McClain’s property Tuesday afternoon. He also told the I-TEAM he will be keeping the driver on his staff but will have him riding with supervision from now on. Landers said the driver will have to work back the money he stole.
Dumping tires is illegal and could carry a penalty of fines or even jail time.