SHAWNEE COUNTY (KSNT) – The huge pile of approximately 400 tires in a Montara neighborhood backyard is gone.
In May, neighbors complained to KSNT News about the hundreds of tires in Randy Rath’s backyard. They worried about health hazards and what they thought was an illegal business.
Rath said he was just “trying to make an honest dollar.” He said he was storing the tires at his home to start up a new recycling business to supplement his income as a painter.
KSNT News reports prompted investigations by both county and state health officials. Officials said his operation was illegal, and they told Rath to dispose of the tires or send them to a new storage location or legal shop.
“I didn’t know it was illegal until just recently,” said Rath. “I’ve learned a lot these last couple weeks.”
The Shawnee County Health Agency said, once they got in contact with him, Rath was “very cooperative.”
Rath paid a truck service to dispose of the tires. He and another worker spent the day under the sweltering sun, rolling tires across the lawn toward the truck and piling them inside.”
Andy Graham, Environmental Health Specialist for the Shawnee County Health Agency, said, “He’s paying somebody to have them hauled off to a tire company that will shred them and use them for playgrounds and other things like that.”
As for Rath’s tire business, he said he’s playing it by ear. He said his top priority was working with the county to address the problem.