Fly Dumping: You Can Help Protect our Forest Preserves and Communities

Our partners at the Forest Preserves of Cook County have provided helpful information about fly dumping and how to report it.

Fly dumping is an illegal activity in which waste is dumped at a site not meant for waste. Last year the Forest Preserves of Cook County responded to 815 instances of fly dumping.

Wildlife can consume waste, and toxins can leach into the environment. Waste can impede the Forest Preserves’ ability to collect stormwater runoff, or even contaminate our rivers, lakes and streams. Fly dumping can also be very costly to clean and properly dispose of waste.

If you are visiting a forest preserve and suspect fly dumping:

  • Keep your eyes open for suspicious activity in remote forest preserve locations.
  • Record the license plate number of suspected fly dumpers.
  • Report fly dumping as soon as it is observed. Contact the Forest Preserves of Cook County Law Enforcement Department at 708-771-1000.
  • When in doubt, report it anyway.

If you see fly dumping anywhere within suburban Cook County notify the Cook County Department of Environment and Sustainability by calling 312-603-8212 or emailing