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'Next stage' announced at recycling centres

By Tom Ramage

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More materials to be accepted at Highland recycling centres

The Highland Council confirm today (Friday) that from Monday (June15) the re-opening of the Household Waste Recycling Centres (HWRC) will move to the next stage.

Recycling again at Aviemore
Recycling again at Aviemore

The move follows the successful re-opening of the majority of sites across the region less than two weeks ago and will see the range of materials that householders are permitted to take to the sites expanded to include electrical appliances and cardboard as well as bagged household waste and garden waste.

HWRC are open for essential waste disposal only - journeys to an HWRC must only be undertaken if waste cannot be stored at home safely.

Electrical appliances include large and small items such as white goods, hoovers, microwaves, televisions/monitors and hairdryers. Householders are advised to flatten cardboard before visiting the site and to remove polystyrene and plastic packaging as this cannot be recycled.

Cars and small non-commercial 4 x 4 vehicles only are permitted entry in this phase, which will enable as many people as possible to pass through the sites and help to ensure that HWRC continue to operate smoothly and safely for both site users and staff. Vans and trailers are not permitted at this stage.

Householders are urged to visit the council’s website forFrequently Asked Questions and what to expect when visiting a HWRC: www.highland.gov.uk/recycle

Only one person is permitted out of the vehicle, unless it is absolutely necessary for a second person to assist with lifting and handling heavier items such as white goods. Site staff are unable to assist with handling waste, therefore householders should only bring waste they can carry and empty into the containers.

Councillor Allan Henderson, chair of the places and communities committee said, “I am delighted we are able to move to the next step and increase the range of items we can accept so quickly after re-opening the sites at the beginning of June.

"This is testament to the goodwill and cooperation of the Highland public for adhering to advice and guidance provided as well as the hard work from the Council staff operating these busy sites. With electrical appliances and cardboard being added to the list of items accepted, along with bagged household waste and garden waste, this provides more opportunities for items to be recycled.

“The number of HWRC open across the region for essential waste disposal now stands at 16, with hundreds of visits already being made by the public who were needing to dispose of waste. Waiting times at the all the sites have been kept to a minimum despite the strict controls that are in place to ensure social distancing is observed. I am pleased to say that the high visitor numbers have been managed safely and in a controlled manner.”

Householders are advised to check the website www.highland.gov.uk/recycle before setting off to their local HWRC to check for opening hours and restrictions in place.

Traffic management systems will continue to be in operation in the surrounding area of a HWRC where necessary. Staff will be also in place at the entrance to each site to speak with visitors and advise on waiting times and procedures on site.

Several of the smaller sites remain temporarily closed due to concerns about how suitable social distancing measures can be effectively implemented in order to keep site users and staff safe. Portree HWRC reopens on Monday 15th June 2020 with a new booking system.

To help reduce the spread of the of Coronavirus site staff will be adopting robust hygiene standards. Householders should wash their hands before and after visiting a HWRC. Please also observe social distancing and stay 2 metres apart from staff and other site users when at a HWRC. Householders are reminded not to visit the site if they are showing symptoms of Coronavirus.

Batteries, lamps and light bulbs are not accepted at the present time. Many retailers offer a household battery recycling take back service. Strictly no commercial waste or recycling will be accepted at HWRC.

Further information can be found by visiting: www.highland.gov.uk/recycle or email recycle@highland.gov.uk

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