Getty/David McNew

City Business Leaders Concerned about Trash Problem in DTLA

May 21, 2019 - 3:12 pm

(KNX 1070) - It's about garbage and health implications.

Trash is an eyesore around downtown Los Angeles but the amount of trash everywhere is also a health concern for city business leaders Tuesday.

Even for medical experts, it can be a problem with dangerous consequences. 

As trash piles up on city streets so do the health risks, especially in the Skid Row area. 

But even local business leaders admit it's not an easy problem to fix. 

Estela Lopez, executive director of the L.A. Downtown Industrial Business Improvement District, joined KNX In-Depth Tuesday afternoon and says the city is looking at an issue that is very complicated.

"You have a distinction that has to be made between what is trash and what is personal property that belongs to someone who is living on the street," she said.

In many cases, it goes far beyond personal property, and it attracts rats and other animals, who carry disease.

Dr. Jeffrey Klausner, an infectious disease specialist at UCLA, also joined KNX In-Depth and says "the small animals have fleas, often, and those fleas will bite the animals and then they could bite other humans or bite other pets people may have. Just provides a rich source for these really awful infectious diseases."

Downtown Los Angeles has already suffered through a typhus outbreak within the past year.