WILLIAMSON — The Tug Valley Area Convention and Visitor’s Bureau along with the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection and REAP hosted a Tug River Tire Tug of War across a span of three days this past week.

More than 1,500 tires and counting have been pulled from the river by volunteers, CVB members and the WV DEP on a stretch of the river between the “Doc” Foglesong Bridge on U.S. 119 and the South Williamson, Kentucky, boat ramp.

The initial goal was to remove 1,000 tires, but that goal was reached in just two days. The tire cleanup was so successful that the DEP scheduled an extra tire cleanup day for Wednesday, with a new goal of surpassing 2,000 tires removed. 

The vast majority of the tires, an estimated 90 percent, have been in the water for decades prior to their being proper waste management or enforcement for the disposal of tires. 

More cleanups on the Tug Fork River are expected to be held in the future.