Elma diaper dumping mystery


Mort Gould has an unusual mystery on his hands: The case of the diaper dumper.

Gould, who works for the county’s Solid Waste Department, handles litter control all the time, but he doesn’t often see dumping quite like what happened starting in March 2010. Someone dumped nearly two tons of dirty diapers, all the same type and all in the same white garbage bags, at the end of Value Parkway east of Elma near a gate on Port Blakely Co. property. The bags apparently were dumped in two trips within a few weeks of each other.

“The bags were totally full and very heavy,” Gould said.

Then, nothing until November 2012 when there were two more dumping trips, same bags, same diaper type. Then again in January of this year, about another half-ton.

Gould talked with day cares and foster homes, trying to uncover who might have so many diapers to unload.

“It’s interesting because one of the things I learned talking to people at day cares is that the parents supply their own diapers, so you’re going to have several different brands and colors. These were all the same brand,” Gould said.

But, he said, the dumping didn’t go on as long as a child would be in diapers.

“What do they do with the rest of them? What are they doing with them now?” he wondered.

During the January incident, the dumpers were very nearly caught on camera. Early that same morning, because of a functionality issue, Port Blakely employees removed a camera set up to catch the culprits. A new batch of bags was spotted just hours later.

“So we just missed them. And it was a nice clear sunny day, so we would have gotten some nice clear pictures of them doing it,” Gould said. “It kind of ruined my whole month.”

It wasn’t just diapers in that spot: In December 2012, someone dumped a deer carcass in that same place, and in April of this year, a pot-bellied pig.

“To my way of thinking, this is not a road that you would pick to dump your trash on unless you were familiar with the area,” Gould said. “I’m hoping that it will sound familiar and they’ll call me up and let me know who it might be.”

If caught, the litterbugs would likely face a gross misdemeanor littering charge with a fine of about $250-300, Gould said. Anyone with information can call Solid Waste at 249-4222.