‘Throw it away the right way’ this Saturday

By BETH BUNCH,

Have you been stockpiling old paint, light bulbs, motor oil and the like?

Then Saturday is your day to get rid of it during Right Way to Throw Away Day.

The City of Hattiesburg, Forrest and Lamar counties and several community agencies are partnering to host the event with two dropoff locations – Bobby L. Chain Municipal Airport (Academy Drive, Hattiesburg) and Lamar County Multi-Purpose Center (99 Central Industrial Row, Purvis). 

Between 8 a.m. and 2 p.m., residents can properly dispose of household items like cleaners, transmission fluid, bleach and old electronics.

This is a day that Forrest County District 5 Supervisor Chris Bowen is passionate about.

“If you happen to look around your house, under your sink and out in your garage, and in a lot of cases, outside around rural pieces of land you’re going to find everything from tires to appliances to electronic equipment to even non-hazardous waste,” Bowen said. 

“It’s just a great way to go ahead and clean up your properties and get items such as chemicals and products to a place that will dispose of, recycle or reuse it in a manner that’s beneficial to the environment and to keep the bad actors out of the landfill and away from our groundwater and soil.”

Bowen stressed that it’s important that we not contaminate our groundwater, which is where our drinking water comes from or our surface water.

It’s also important 

It’s also helpful to get such items in the hands of people who know how to properly dispose of them.

He urges safety when transporting waste.

“We don’t people to do anything in the transportation of any of these wastes that that would jeopardize their health and safety,” Bowen said, noting people need to be very careful and not put any fertilizer next to diesel. 

“Don’t bring us any explosives or any PCBs or any ammunition,” he stressed.

People need to get help loading items that may be to heavy and he suggests putting a tarp on the backseat of your vehicle if you are transporting old paint and the like.

Bowen said as vehicles arrive, those working the event will remove all items from the vehicles or truckbeds. “We are asking people not to get out of their vehicles,” he said, thus allowing the flow of traffic to move in an orderly manner.

He also suggested that you label everything that can possibly be labeled.

“If you’re bring a bunch of stuff from the church or somebody else, please be extremely careful and label everything you can.” This allows workers to make sure items get to the correct station quickly.

Bowen said Right Way to Throw Away Day is one of the favorite programs the county sponsors. “All I have about all year long is, ‘When is it? Did I miss it?’ There’s always a lot of pent up desire to have this program.

The event is paid for through a grant from the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality. “We match that grand with the City of Hattiesburg and Lamar County,” he said.

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