cigarettes 87853934 TxDOT Fighting Litter With Texas Is Not Your Ashtray Signs

Cigarette butts are seen in the street. (credit: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

TEXAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Cigarette litter is an even greater danger in the Texas drought. It’s a problem the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT), which manages the state’s Don’t Mess with Texas litter prevention campaign, is tackling head on.

On billboards across the state, TxDOT is putting out the same: “Texas is not your ashtray.”

In a press release sent Thursday the program administrator for TxDOT’s Travel Information Division, Brenda Flores-Dollar, said, “Not only is littering against the law, it’s a public safety issue. Don’t Mess with Texas urges smokers year-round to keep their cigarette butts in their car and dispose of them properly. It’s even more important during this worsening drought.”

To reach even more people, officials with Don’t Mess with Texas and TxDOT are planning to also use social media to help in the campaign to reduce tobacco littering.

According to TxDOT, six out of 10 Texas smokers admit to tossing cigarettes out windows. In addition to fire danger, smokers who toss cigarette butts could face a $500 littering fine.

According to a 2009 study commissioned by TxDOT, tobacco trash, including nearly 400 million cigarette butts, made up the majority of litter on Texas roads.