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People scrapping for cash as aluminum prices climb - abc27 WHTM

People scrapping for cash as aluminum prices climb

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HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) -

An ounce of gold is going for $1,600 - silver for $40 - but there's a much more common metal that's become increasingly precious.

Aluminum is bringing in 70 cents a pound, and more and more people are learning there's cash in those cans.

The Berger family of Dauphin, for example, dropped an old metal table at Tri State Recyclers and lots of cans.

"One summer we made over 75 dollars on just cans that my family drinks, from picking up along the road too, so it was litter clean up and a little money back in the pocket," Kelly Berger said.

Some 150 people a day come through Tri State, according to manager Paul Friedline. He said when prices are up and the economy is down, business is booming.

"Business has been real good," he said. "We get all kinds of characters in here, a lot of scrapping going on. A lot of people are laid off, so there's lot of scrapping."

Al Palmer of Harrisburg is a scrapper. The trash of others become his treasure.

"Anywhere from 50 to 100 bucks, two to three times a day," Palmer said. "When the economy is as bad as what it is, you gotta do something."

James Spotts of Steelton said he makes $600 a week for selling heavy metal.

"This last load was 1,500 pounds," he said. "I'll make about 140 bucks."

While the experts are heavy duty, there's much easier lifting. Just 26 12-ounce cans make a pound, which was good news for the Bergers when they cashed in their cans.

"Eighty-nine dollars and 14 cents," Kelly Berger said. "Absolutely wonderful. More than we were expecting."

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