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County plans tire amnesty

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By Molly Haines

In an effort to rid Kentucky’s landscape of waste tires, Owen County officials are getting ready for the 2011 tire amnesty.
Owen County’s waste tire amnesty will be held from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. June 16-18.
During this time, Owen County residents will not be charged when they drop off unwanted tires at the Kentucky Transportation Department Maintenance Barn on Old Sweet Owen Road.
The tires are recycled to become products like tire-dervived fuel or crumb rubber, which can be used as mulch in playground areas.
Owen County Judge-executive Carolyn Keith said it is important to get rid of waste tires in order to help protect the environment.
“We have hundreds of waste tires along our roadsides in Owen County,” Keith said. “These tires present a danger to our environment and in many cases can create a health hazard.”
According to the Kentucky Division of Waste Management, unmanaged waste tires represent environmental and health risks through fire hazard and as a breeding ground for disease-carrying mosquitoes.
It has been demonstrated that mosquitoes can breed 5,000 times faster in water that collects in tires than in water that accumulates naturally in forests.
The Kentucky Division of Waste Management has guidelines for properly disposing of waste tires:
• Waste tires can be taken to a permitted landfill that will agree to accept it.
• Waste tires can be taken to an incinerator or other facility for use as a fuel. The facility must be registered with the waste-tire program and meet local and state requirements. These facilities typically charge a disposal fee for accepting waste tires.
• Waste tires can be delivered to any transporter, processor or end-use market that is registered with the waste-tire program. A fee for disposal can be expected.
Keith said getting rid of waste tires can also prevent breaking county nuisance laws.
“We encourage all citizens to bring tires to our recycling center during tire amnesty running from June 16 through June 18,” Keith said. “A collection of old tires on property can result in a nuisance violation. This is a wonderful opportunity for citizens to dispose of old tires on their property.”