Recycling tires could cost you more than you expect in Shelby County

WATCH: Cost of dumping tires in Shelby County

SHELBY CO., Tenn. — It’s been two weeks since crews with the city of Memphis started removing the tires from a vacant lot in South Memphis.

So far, they’ve removed about 70 percent of those tires which were collected during the city and county Tire Redemption program, but if you want to recycle them on your own, it may cost more than you were expecting.

Lloyd Brown said he had some old tires of his own plus some he found in his Raleigh neighborhood, so he decided to recycle them over the weekend.

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“I was expecting they were going to ask me to pay $10, $5 or actually just take the tires for free,” he said.

But that wasn't the case. It cost $62 to recycle the 17 tires.

Brown said he was shocked by the cost because on the same day he dumped twice as much trash to a landfill and it cost him half as much.

“The common person in this town can’t afford to put $60 to dispose of trash. They can’t do it, and the result is we got tires all over the place,” he said.

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Brown went to Liberty Tires, which is contracted by Shelby County to recycle tires and the company charges by weight.

The company representative told FOX13 they won't take tires for free if someone can't afford the fees.

Brown believes there should be more options for recycling tires so it’s more affordable for everyone.

“There’s a role not only of the citizen to be responsible for disposing things in the right way but our government needs to take responsibility to make it easier for us to dispose of things,” said Brown.

A Shelby County Public Works spokesperson said department crews cleanup 534 illegal dump sites a year.