Fri, Feb 2, 2024 4:00 PM

Sparks could fly over battery fire risk


Paula Hulburt

Council staff are warning people not to ditch batteries in rubbish or recycling to help prevent a potential landfill fire.

Waste disposal methods mean sparks could fly as rubbish is compacted down.

This puts both staff and the environment at risk, says Marlborough District Council Solid Waste Manager Mark Lucas.

He is urging people to use the council’s free small battery recycling bins instead.

“As all of the waste is compacted either in a collection truck, transfer station or landfill there is a potential that this will cause sparks and start a fire, posing a risk to staff and the environment.

“Even if they don’t cause a fire, old batteries contain chemicals and other materials that are harmful to the environment.”

Batteries are found in all manner of gadgets, toys, power tools, phones, laptops and many other devices.

Keeping them out of landfill completely is the aim, Mark says.

“They take over 100 years to break down, so we do not want them in the landfill at all.

“Also, as all batteries are recyclable, and in Marlborough we recycle batteries, there is no reason for them to go to landfill in the first place.

There is no charge to dispose of batteries at a council collection points as costs are covered by rates.

Vehicle batteries or damaged small batteries need to be taken to the Hazardous Waste Centre on Wither Road in Blenheim, opposite the Resource Recovery Centre, Mark says.

“When it’s time to dispose of a battery, don’t throw it out - bring it to one of Council’s small battery recycling bins,” Mark says.

Dry cell and small batteries can be dropped off at:

Blenheim: Blenheim i-Site: 8 Sinclair Street, The Blue Door: 46 Seymour Street, Life Pharmacy: 101A Market Street, , Noel Leeming: corner of Charles and Seymour Streets, Unichem Redwoodtown Pharmacy: 70 Cleghorn Street, Unichem Springlands Pharmacy: 131 Middle Renwick Road, Bunnings Warehouse, 10 Westwood Ave, Mitre 10 Mega Marlborough: 174-186 Alabama Road, Jaycar Electronics: 8c Scott Street.

Havelock: Havelock i-Site: 61 Main Road, Havelock Transfer Station: Queen Charlotte Drive.

Picton: Fresh Choice Picton: 100 High Street, Envirohub: 14 Auckland Street, Picton i-Site: The Foreshore, Picton Transfer Station: Gravesend Place.

Rai Valley: Rai Valley Transfer Station: Ronga Road, Rai Valley.

Seddon: Seddon Transfer Station: State Highway 1.

Wairau Valley: Wairau Valley Transfer Station, Church Lane.

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