ROCKINGHAM — Ladd Brearley was able to dispose of 20-year-old paint thanks to Richmond County’s Solid Waste Department.
The department worked with ECOFLO, a company out of Greensboro that helps dispose of hazardous waste, on Saturday to help residents in the county dispose of items that are no longer accepted at the local dump sites and landfill locations. The event was known as Household Hazardous Waste Day.
Melvin Bivens, a worker from ECOFLO, accepted latex paint, oil-based paint, propane and pesticides from residents that needed somewhere to safely dispose of the chemicals.
“The whole point of today is to help people get rid of those things that have been sitting around the garage for years,” Bivens said.
And “years” was the correct term. Brearley, of Rockingham, had been collecting paint and pesticides in his storage area for years.
“I’ve made two trips out here,” Brearley said. “This really is a great service. I’m really pleased that they’re doing this. I hope they continue doing it every year.”
Jerry Austin Jr., of Richmond County’s Solid Waste Department, said that Brearley will likely get his wish as the county intends to host an event like this every year.
“This is probably about the fifth time we’ve done an event like this in the past 10 years,” Austin said. “We want to start doing this every year around the same time. About 75 percent of what we get are things that people stick in the garage or closet for years, so people are very glad to get rid of it.”
Jimmy McCain, of Rockingham, was certainly glad to be rid of some of his household items. He made multiple trips out to the site.
“I have a lot of paint left from a previous business,” McCain said. “I’ve had it for some five years now.”
Austin is hoping that the turn out for next year will be even greater.
“So far today is going well,” Austin said. “We’ve had close to 50 people turn up. We sent out flyers with every county water bill, but we’re hoping to expand our advertising so that more people can take advantage of this opportunity.”