The Glendale Fire Department has its own hazardous waste collection facility, which is open and free for Glendale, Burbank and La Cañada Flintridge residents from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wednesdays and Saturdays, but the annual county event is open to anyone, he said. And the companies contracted to operate the county event are equipped to handled a much higher volume, he said.
“At our facility, we get about 300 to 400 cars a month,” Diaz said. “Here, in one day, we’ll get 1,500 to 2,000 cars.”
The event Saturday functioned like an efficient, high-security fast-food drive-through: Cars proceeded slowly into a coned lane that was covered in a temporary plastic sheet, and then the driver just popped the trunk or, for pickup trucks, dropped the gate of the flatbed.
Teams of workers, all clad in white plastic suits and wearing rubber gloves, proceeded to quickly unload cans of paint, oils and stereo and computer equipment. The waste was quickly categorized and loaded into appropriate boxes.
Most of the collected waste is transported to recycling facilities that manage to find a second life for components of whatever is thrown away, said Judd Henkes, a Los Angeles County Sanitation District engineering technician.
Nonrecyclable materials end up at hazardous waste landfills in Texas and Arkansas, as there are no such facilities in California, Henkes said.
La Cañada Flintridge resident Craig Gropper brought a bucket of old batteries that once powered toys that belong to his three young children.
“They pile up,” Gropper said. “We have a little pot in the garage, and whenever they fill up I come to these things to get rid of them, because obviously I know the damage they can do . . . I just feel so guilty if one ends up in the trash.”
For more information on the city’s hazardous waste collection services, visit www.ci.glendale.ca.us/public_works/hazardous_waste.asp.
RYAN VAILLANCOURT covers business, politics and the foothills. He may be reached at (818) 637-3215 or by e-mail at email@example.com.