Do you have some dead batteries, engine oil or maybe a tub of old paint that need to be disposed of? If you answered “yes” you can now call Waste Management because the trash disposal service officially launched a hazardous materials (HAZMAT) pickup service on Tuesday, Aug. 23 for all Santa Monica residents.
Developed in conjunction with the City of Santa Monica and its Office of Sustainability and the Environment, Waste Management’s “Household Hazardous Waste Home Collection Pilot Program” is a door-to-door service to regularly collect HAZMAT from residents.
Santa Monica is the second Los Angeles County municipality to incorporate such a program. The City of Manhattan Beach was the first.
“Our goal is to pick up from at least 4,000 residents for the first year (of the program),” said James Conway, a senior environmental analyst with the City’s Hazardous Materials Section.
The current HAZMAT facility welcomes about 5,000 visitors per year to drop off household hazard materials.
Conway said all items were properly secured inside the truck once picked up.
Among the items usually considered as HAZMAT are paint, batteries, engine oil, spray paint, and many other household cleaning items.
With the official launch of the pilot program, both the City and Waste Management hope to maximize the number of residents who use the service.
Accordingly, drop-off service hours for HAZMAT have been cut. As of Sept. 17, the Household Hazardous Waste Center will be open for drop-off service only on Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
The City and Waste Management plan to completely phase out the drop-off center, located at 2500 Michigan Avenue just off Interstate 10 at Cloverfield Boulevard, by Jan. 1, 2012, should the pilot program be successful.
The pilot program has a budget of about $250,000 and covers a starting fleet of about four trucks with a few more on order.
Waste Management officials said the trucks are built to prevent spills onto the road and several emergency measures are in place should some sort of disaster strike.
As part of the program, Santa Monicans can reserve collection service by calling into Waste Management at 800.449.7587 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.
There is no charge for the service nor is there a limit on how much HAZMAT may be collected. The collection routes are determined on a demand basis. It may take about two weeks from initial contact to household pickup.
William Anderson, a senior manager with Waste Management’s At Your Door service, said it was crucial to not place the HAZMAT curbside or by the trash when scheduling a pickup, but instead at a safe location where the receiving technician will know where to look (such as the front door or other predetermined location).
Residents may also send a collection service request via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or obtain more information at www.WMatyourdoor.com.
For additional information please visit sustainablesm.org/hhw or call 310.458.2213.
The program was delayed a few months due to permitting issues with the County of Los Angeles.
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