Disposal District Committee members decide to hold a new hazardous waste day in fall

Jul 2, 2019

By Nadya Korytnikova and Chloe Shelford

In the wake of a disastrous hazardous waste day in June, with long lines and many turned away, the Carver Marion Wareham Waste Disposal District Committee decided on Wednesday night to try to hold another day in the fall. 

The waste day will most likely be held simultaneously in Wareham and Carver. The Committee will decide upon the exact day during their next meeting, which will take place either on July 24 or 31 at Marion Police Station. 

The decision was made following the District’s Hazardous Waste Day on June 1, when residents from three towns brought hazardous waste accumulated over the past year to the municipal maintenance facility on Charge Pond Road.  Even though the event was scheduled to start at 9 a.m., people began arriving at 6:30 a.m. and an estimated 75 cars were lined up when the gate opened. 

The lines stretched down Charge Pond Road and past the YMCA, prompting some parents to drop young baseball players off on the side of the road to run to the game as the line was moving too slowly. Many of those who waited — some for more than two hours — were turned away at 12:30, a half hour before the event was supposed to end. There was an accident involving an out-of-control driver who weaved back and forth across the lane before hitting multiple cars, which were trapped in the bumper-to-bumper traffic.

Waste Disposal District director Jeffrey Osuch said over the course of the event, the employees of ACV Enviro, the environmental waste management company, unloaded waste brought by people in about 370 cars, at a rate of almost 100 cars an hour.

“The ACV Enviro employees did not finish sorting all the items until 9 p.m., which is probably in the eyes of employees is three to four hours beyond their expected hours of operation, so it gives you a feel for the volume,” said Osuch. Osuch noted that during the Hazardous Waste Day, many people brought in batteries, fluorescent bulbs, thermometers, and other items that could be disposed at the recycling center during normal business hours. Those items were listed on the ad distributed to residents as waste that would be accepted at the event.

Wareham resident Joseph Bennedict replied to Osuch that residents are not aware of the recycling guidelines due to outdated information on the Carver, Marion, and Wareham town websites. 

“The information about what your facilities take is not accurate. The list of what is taken is not dated and the origin of the information is unknown,” said Bennedict. “Give people more credit. People want to do the right thing, but you need to keep your message consistent, in plain English. Your information needs to be available in the public domain.”

The committee said that all the people were coming from Carver, Marion, and Wareham, but board member Robert Belbin proposed that the future Hazardous Waste Days should have better security so only those cars that have a town-issued resident sticker drop off waste.

“We will have to check all of the license plates and stickers. This will help control the process,” said Belbin.  

Although committee members agree that more frequent Waste Days would be ideal, they are concerned regarding the available funds. Osuch said the June 1 event cost about $37,000, which will be reimbursed by the waste management company, Covanta Energy.