Divers plunge into Chattahoochee River for the 23rd Annual Help the Hooch

(Source: Marla Spence/WTVM)
(Source: Marla Spence/WTVM)
(Source: Marla Spence/WTVM)
(Source: Marla Spence/WTVM)

COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - Several pounds of garbage are no longer in the Chattahoochee River thanks to the 23rd Annual Help the Hooch River Cleanup.

Saturday morning divers along with dozens of volunteers got their hands dirty and pulled things like old car tires, toys, and even a suitcase full of items out the river.

Each year about 130,000 to 140,000 pounds of trash is picked up by Phenix City Public Works.

Gloria Smart with Keep Columbus Beautiful says people should take a good thought before using the river as a dump.

"People just go out and throw things out without having any notion of our environment. It's so important for everybody to know that anything that is found in our major roadways floats down into our watershed and it causes problems for our wildlife," says Smart.

Among hundreds of volunteers, many Spencer High School students were in attendance cleaning up as much as they could.

"Today we got a lot of paper products and plastic products, a lot of bottles and bottle caps," says Spencer High School student Aziza Souder Hickman.

Saturday clean-up wrapped up with the Water Shed Festival at Woodruff Park in Columbus.

Help the Hooch is one of the largest cleanup efforts in the state.

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