published: Friday, April 26, 2013
County collecting household hazardous waste Saturday
By BARRY FOSTER
SEBRING - It's that time of year again. The Highlands County Recycling Department will hold a Household Hazardous Waste Collection at the Skipper Road Landfill area from 8 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Saturday.
For nearly a quarter century, the county's Recycling Department has provided a household hazardous waste roundup which allows for proper and safe disposal of various chemicals -- especially old paint cans -- commonly found around the home. Also accepted during this collection will be electronic waste (or e-waste) such as computers, monitors, cell phones, keyboards, TV's, VCR's and other end of life electronics.
Established in 1990, the idea has been to collect hazardous waste twice a year - once in the spring and once in the fall - in an effort to keep those types of materials from being dumped illegally or otherwise disposed of in an unsafe manner. Instead, the county has hired a special vendor that collects and removes the items from the county and destroy them in an approved process.
Over the decades, the county has collected hundreds of tons of hazardous waste. Records indicate that in the past five years, the county has collected nearly 150 tons of e-waste alone
This year, the collection will be done in connection with the Massachusetts-based Clean Harbors Environmental group. Officials from the local office in Bartow are slated to be in the county Friday for what was termed a "shed clean-out." That is where items turned in since the last hazardous waste roundup will be categorized and hauled off, with the semi-annual collection to be held mid-day Saturday,
Although e-waste is being collected, organizers said this event will not be for such things as refrigerators, stoves or any type of what are referred to as "white goods." Those with questions as to what will be acceptable for the clean up may call the Highlands County Recycling Department at 655-6400.
The household hazardous waste collection will be held at the hazardous waste storage site at 6000 Skipper Road. Those unfamiliar with the area may follow the signs.
Officials emphasized that this weekend's collection is for residents only. Businesses should contact the Highlands County Recycling Department for their disposal options.
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