Residents will once again be able to safely dispose of household hazardous waste items such as motor oil, paints, and batteries at collection facilities located throughout Riverside County.
In an effort to help prevent pollution and damage to local watersheds, the Riverside County Department of Waste Resources will be resuming operation of its Household Hazardous Waste (HHW) collection facilities on Monday, June 1.
The disposal of HHW is critical to watershed protection. When HHW is thrown away improperly, pollutants can get into storm drains and stream right into local watersheds. Materials such as motor oil and oil filters, anti-freeze, paints, solvents, cleaners and old batteries should always be taken to a certified collection facility.
HHW facilities have been closed and drop-off events have been suspended since March 17 to help reduce the spread of COVID-19. It was determined that maintaining these facilities and events would have created risks to the public and employees, as it would have been difficult to maintain proper social distancing measures and there was a shortage of necessary personal protective equipment. As the County of Riverside has moved forward in the reopening of several categories of businesses, the determination has been made that it is now safe to reopen HHW facilities.
In light of the ongoing COVID-19 situation, several precautions will be taken at HHW facilities, including having customers stay in their vehicle at all times, requiring mandatory use of face coverings, and requiring that materials be kept in an unlocked trunk or bed of vehicle for easy retrieval by staff.
For more information on HHW facility hours and locations in Riverside County, please visit http://www.rcwaste.org/hhw.
For members of the public who prefer to avoid public spaces at this time, there are several easy and safe measures to temporarily store HHW materials at home until they are ready to be dropped off:
- Store HHW out of reach of children in closed containers
- Keep HHW in their original containers
- Do not mix HHW products
- Never throw HHW into the garbage or on the ground
- Never pour HHW in the toilet or sinks or down the storm drain.