Easter weekend brings religious fervour, a welcome break from work, plenty of chocolate eggs and piles of rubbish on Cayman’s beaches from holiday campers.
Beaches throughout Grand Cayman fill with tents and makeshift shacks as the population heads to the seaside to enjoy an outdoor break, but this year, as in past years, heaps of garbage have been left behind on the Island’s beaches.
Roydell Carter, director of the Department of Environmental Health, urged campers or beachgoers who had left bags of rubbish behind them on the beach over the weekend to go back and take the bags home to be disposed of or drop them at roadside areas where they can be collected by his department’s garbage collection trucks.
“What we had done to assist is place containers at different locations to assist the public. We have asked them to use those to dump their waste.
“We are also making regular district visits in popular areas to see what state the beaches have been left in,” said Mr. Carter.
He said he had seen people cleaning up after themselves at Public Beach on Seven Mile Beach over the weekend. “So, I think the message is getting through,” he said.
However, he acknowledged that in some of the smaller or private beaches, littering was still a problem.
“For the most part though, people are cleaning up. There are always a few people who leave the bags on the beaches as opposed to bringing them to the roadsides,” he added.
Recreation, Parks and Cemeteries Unit Manager Jonathan Jackson said no extra crews from his unit had been placed on duty to collect the garbage from the beaches, due staff shortages, but that the unit had made changes to its cleaning schedule.
“By reducing its regular work of grass cutting, raking leaves, hedge trimming, etc., RPCU has rearranged its regular facility cleaning schedule to accommodate Easter cleanup efforts.
All RPCU crews have been assigned to restroom cleaning and trash collection during this busy Easter period,” he said.
Mr. Jackson advised campers remaining on the beaches this week to put all trash bags, where possible, in the nearest Department of Environmental Health dumpsters, which will be serviced and removed this week.
He also advised those camping on private property to take trash to the nearest dumpster or take it home for proper disposal in their own bins.
“Many of the bags that were placed along the roadside have already been removed by the DEH staff,” he said.
He said the amount of trash on the beaches was similar to that seen last year. “A lot of people have cooperated with proper trash disposal, but there may be a few that did not comply.
DEH staff will be monitoring the situation and if people have not complied, they should return to their campsites to collect and dispose of any remaining waste in a proper and sanitary manner,” Mr. Jackson said.
He added that both the Recreation, Parks and Cemeteries Unit and the Department of Environmental Health thanked people who had “complied with keeping the beaches and camp areas clean, so that the sites can be enjoyed by others”.