Waste collection draws hundreds

More than 400 cars drove to Miller-Driscoll School on  Oct. 26, for the Conservation Commission’s 26th annual Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day.

The commission reported that 353 cars from Wilton were joined by 115 from Weston, Westport, New Canaan, Norwalk, Darien, Stamford, and Greenwich. Wilton’s portion of the cost is approximately $10,000. The municipalities of the out-of-town guests are billed separately for their respective portions.

Many cleaners, paints, pesticides, fertilizers and other products are corrosive, highly flammable, reactive, and poisonous. These products were collected by Care Environmental, Inc. and disposed of in an environmentally safe manner.

The bulk of the material collected at this event is old paints and stains. With the establishment of Connecticut’s new paint recycling program in place, this was the last year  household paints and stains will be collected. The new program provides residents with year-round drop-off locations at participating paint retailers. Visit paintcare.org for details

The PaintCare program is funded by a surcharge at the time of purchase and the change to the Hazardous Waste Collection Day should save the town approximately $8,000 per year, the commission said. Additionally, removing paint from the collection event should improve the traffic flow.

The commission received the help of volunteers, including Wilton High School students, to help collect the thousands of gallons of material.