Councillor Rob Humby, Deputy Leader and Executive Member for Economy, Transport and Environment at Hampshire County Council, said: “Now we have clarity from the Government, we will be opening the HWRCs for those households where it is not possible to keep their waste at home during this time without causing a health risk.”
The HWRCs were temporarily closed at the end of March following Government guidelines on non-essential journeys to help prevent the spread of Coronavirus.
Councillor Humby continued: “Visiting an HWRC will be very different than it was before the Coronavirus outbreak - as all sites will be operating with safe social distancing measures in place. This means that less people and vehicles will be allowed on site at any one time, similar to what residents are now used to at supermarkets, which will inevitably cause delays in entering and potential traffic queues. So, I would ask people to please be patient and considerate of others who live nearby and take the time to reconsider whether their journey is essential.”
All sites will reopen under temporary revised daily opening hours of 10am – 4pm.
The following measures will be in place across Hampshire’s network of HWRCs:
- Use of sites is only for essential disposal of waste whereby storing such waste causes a risk of injury or to health
- As per government guidelines, residents in the specified vulnerable category (those who are clinically extremely vulnerable, people over 70 and pregnant women) are strongly advised not to visit a site
- Restricted numbers of vehicles will be permitted to access the site at any one time and site staff will enforce this at the site entrance.
- There will be staff at the entrance to each site, wearing a body camera, to manage the flow of vehicles. Security staff will be deployed at all sites and there will be a zero-tolerance approach to any form of abuse.
- New temporary barriers will be in place at the entrance to each site and used to mark out new parking arrangements with site staff guiding vehicles, from a safe distance, into spaces
- As far as possible, only one person per household should visit the HWRC.
- Due to social distancing measures, site staff will be unable to provide any assistance with unloading material or carrying material. Residents are asked to bring only the amount of waste they can comfortably carry and empty into containers
- Trailers are not permitted. Enforcement of social distancing on site means severely reduced capacity for manoeuvring trailers. Vans should be bringing no more waste than that which would fit in an average saloon car boot
- Everyone must always keep at least a two-metre distance from others at all times.
- Sites will accept all waste material streams, except for chargeable waste – soil, rubble, asbestos and plasterboard. However, some processors have shut down because of the COVID-19 pandemic and it is likely that some materials outlets may not be available in the short term. Please check the website before your visit to check if any specific material is not able to be accepted temporarily.
- Reuse sales areas will remain closed. Where possible, please continue to store items of furniture which could be reused, donate to local furniture charities, or use online platforms (e.g. Freegle / Facebay / Gumtree). Please see the Smart Living website for more information on furniture reuse.
Where residents or members of their households have had COVID19 symptoms in the last 14 days, they should not travel to or enter a HWRC. After this period, any COVID-19 contaminated waste should be double bagged and put aside for 72 hours before being brought to a site.
The start date for the HWRC vehicle registration scheme has been postponed in light of the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic. However, the online vehicle registration system remains open in readiness for implementation later this year.
More information at: www.hants.gov.uk/coronavirus