Iconic anti-littering campaign makes comeback

'Don’t Mess With Texas' barrels rolled out across state

In 1986, the Texas Department of Transportation launched the “Don’t Mess With Texas” campaign, encouraging residents to properly dispose of trash and litter. 

In the years that followed, trash on state roadways decreased by substantially, but there are still 1.1 billion pieces of litter on Texas roadways.

On Thursday, TxDOT re-launched the iconic campaign in hopes of trashing the problem for good.

"There are a thousand people that move to Texas every week, and there are new Texans being born every day,” said Margo Richards, spokeswoman for the Texas Department of Transportation. “And so we want to make sure that people who have lived here for years -- but then also the new residents of Texas -- to understand that everyone is responsible for taking care of our state and maintaining the beautiful roadways that we have.”

As part of the re-launched campaign, 300 trash barrels with the “Don’t Mess With Texas” slogan will be placed at various locations throughout the state, including SeaWorld, the Pearl Brewery complex, and the Alamo.

Littering in Texas is against the law, and is punishable with a $500 fine for items less than or equal to 5 pounds or 5 gallons, or up to $2,000 for larger amounts.

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