Somerset Waste Partnership (SWP) plans to keep the county’s 16 recycling sites open on standard winter hours for essential use during the latest COVID-19 national lockdown.
Government guidance – gov.uk/guidance/national-lockdown-stay-at-home – has clarified that people can visit recycling sites as they are an essential service.
SWP is asking people to only visit sites if the trip is really necessary, for example because waste cannot be safely kept home or disposed of through kerbside recycling and rubbish collections.
Recycling sites already have measures in place to protect the public and staff, including:
- Do not visit if you have COVID symptoms or have been asked to shield
- Maintain social distance
- Wear gloves and consider wearing a mask
- Maximum two people per vehicle from the same household
- Site staff cannot assist with unloading
- Vehicle and trailer permits continue – gov.uk/apply-for-a-permit
Staff will monitor site user numbers and control vehicle flow if necessary; visitors are asked for their understanding and patience.
The Reuse Shop at Taunton Recycling Centre will be closed during the lockdown.
SWP is also highlighting government guidance on how to dispose of personal waste if you have COVID symptoms or live in a household with someone who does.
Personal waste, such as tissues, facemasks and disposable cleaning cloths, should be double-bagged in black sacks, kept separate from other waste in the home for 72 hours, and then be added to your rubbish bin outside your home for the usual collection.
All residents are asked to maintain a social distance from collection crews. They should wash hands and disinfect container handles before and after putting out recycling boxes and bins.
For latest lockdown information, visit somersetwaste.gov.uk/coronavirus and follow @somersetwaste on Twitter and Facebook.