Now is the time to get ready for the City’s 22nd annual household hazardous waste (HHW) collection. This year’s event is scheduled from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, April 6.
“This is the largest collection event sponsored by any city in the region,” Water Pollution Control Director Lisa Phelps said. “In the 21 previous years Independence has held the mobile collections, citizens have disposed of more than 641 tons of hazardous waste. WPC statistics show that during last year’s HHW collection 417 vehicles delivered 48,667 pounds, an average of 116.71 pounds per delivery, of hazardous waste material.”
The April 6 event will be in the large parking lot bordered by Walnut, Liberty, Kansas and Osage streets, one block south of the Independence Square. This collection is FREE to residents. Proof of residency, such as a driver’s license or City utility bill, is required.
“A typical home can have many hazardous products used for cleaning, painting, beautifying and disinfecting the house, yard and garage,” Phelps said. “Once products labeled as flammable, toxic, corrosive, or reactive cannot or will not be used for their original purpose, they become hazardous wastes.”
These chemical-based products from a single home may seem insignificant; but when thousands of people use similar products the combined effect becomes a major problem when they are handled, stored and disposed of improperly.
“The health and safety of people, animals, the community and environment are endangered when these products get discarded in the trash or poured down sinks or into street storm drains,” Phelps said.
Products which will be accepted at the HHW collection include batteries; paint and paint products (including aerosol cans), varnish, stripper, thinner/turpentine; fluorescent light bulbs; garden and yard products (herbicides, pesticides, sprays, rat poison, and weed killers); automotive fluids, such as antifreeze and used motor oil; household cleaners (drain, toilet, oven); kerosene; mercury thermometers; unused, unwanted medicines, etc.
If you are not sure if a particular waste will be accepted, call WPC at (816) 325-7727.
Containers with gasoline or a mixture of any products cannot be returned but, if requested, containers with used oil or antifreeze can be returned.
The HHW collection will not accept electronics, appliances, trash, yard waste, medical waste, tires, asbestos, radioactive waste, pressurized gas cylinders or commercial waste.
The Independence Police Department will be onsite with certified explosive ordnance officers to collect and dispose of old or unwanted ammunition, explosives, firearms, fireworks, etc. Contact the IPD at 325-7827 for more information about this type of disposal.
To transport and deliver to the site, tightly secure all container lids. Bring in the original containers if possible. Don’t mix different or unknown substances. If containers are leaking, wrap them in plastic and pack in a larger container or box with absorbent material such as cat litter. To pack items, use sturdy tubs or boxes and surround them with newspaper. Keep chemicals away from children and pets while transporting items. Use the car trunk or truck bed.
Volunteers will help unload vehicles. No walk-ups will be allowed.
Other regional cities will host collection events later this year. For more information on upcoming collections, call (816) 513-8401.
During the rest of the year, residents can take HHW products to the Kansas City facility at 4707 Deramus, (816) 513-8400. Days of operation are Thursday, Friday and Saturday. The service is free to HHW Participating Communities.
For more information about the City’s HHW mobile collection, call WPC at 325-7727 or visit indep.us/wpc.