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CHARLESTON — The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection’s Rehabilitation Environmental Action Plan has postponed its tire collection events indefinitely due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In the interim, REAP officials said, West Virginians can lawfully dispose waste tires at local tire shops or landfills for a nominal fee.

Tire collection events are often hosted by a combination of REAP staff, tire contractors and local volunteers and require citizens to provide a state-issued ID before dropping off their tires.

“Waste collection events almost always have a large amount of hand-to-hand transfers and the potential for social gatherings, and we feel they present an unnecessary risk given our current situation,” said REAP Program Manager Sandra Rogers in a West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection release on the agency’s website. “We understand the importance of these collection events for communities around the state, but the immediate health and safety of our citizens and staff is paramount. We look forward to resuming the events as soon as it is safe to do so.”

Waste tires are an environmental and public health concern and should be disposed of properly. Stored waste tires should be kept covered or indoors so they do not collect water and become breeding sites for mosquitoes. More information about waste tire storage and disposal laws is available under West Virginia Code §22-15-21.

Additionally, a few county recycling programs and solid waste authorities are still currently accepting waste tires. More information is available on REAP’s 2020 Tire Collection Events schedule. These events are not sponsored by the WVDEP.

According to the schedule posted on the WVDEP website, tires will only be accepted from state residents, who should have West Virginia residency identification available when they sign in at the site. Additionally, a 10-tire-maximum tire limit per person will be strictly enforced, tires must be off the rim, and tires are accepted only from cars or light trucks.

To access the schedule or receive more WVDEP news and information, visit www.dep.wv.gov.