BOISE -- Residents along Beacon Light Road woke up to a mystery Friday morning: More than 100 old junk tires scattered alongside the roadway.
The Ada County Sheriff's Office said 147 tires - some still attached to metal rims - were strewn for more than three miles along Beacon Light between Eagle Road and Idaho 16.
Every tire was a potential traffic and safety hazard, the sheriff's office said.
The tires appear to have been thrown one-by-one from a vehicle, and were located in intervals, rather than grouped together in a pile. Some were wedged in trees or propped against fence posts.
Several callers who alerted KTVB to the situation guessed the tires were placed there as a joke. But Ada County Sheriff's Office spokesman Patrick Orr wasn't laughing.
Deputies were on scene, and are taking the situation seriously, he said.
"They're not treating it as a prank, they treating it as illegal dumping, and a significant illegal dumping," he said.
Each tire dumped in Eagle could result in a separate misdemeanor charge - distributing or scattering garbage - punishable by up to six months in jail and a $1,000 fine.
A separate infraction for placing debris on public property could be incurred for each tire dumped in unincorporated Ada County - punishable by up to a $300 fine and up to 10 days in jail.
Orr said the sheriff's office often deals with dumping cases, typically in the more remote areas of the county. Those cases are investigated vigorously, he said.
Detectives from Star and Eagle are working with the sheriff's department to figure out who left the tires.
An Ada County Highway District employee was on scene picking up the tires Friday morning.
The sheriff's office suggests that whoever dumped the tires contact Eagle police or the sheriff's office immediately.
Authorities would also like to hear from anyone who saw a truck carrying tires on Beacon Light Road late Thursday night or early Friday morning.
Anyone with information should send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or call Ada County non-emergency dispatch at 377-6790.
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