Household waste recycling centres in Cumbria are scheduled to reopen today.
Many councils across the country have shut sites during the coronavirus crisis to concentrate on kerbside collections, and reduce the risk of spreading the disease.
Government guidance advised councils on May 5 they could reopen centres 'only where waste or recycling could not be stored safely at home' or disposed of in another legitimate way.
With the fourteen centres reopening comes a long list of restrictions in line with Public Health England guidelines, to prevent the spread of Covid-19 and protect staff and members of the public.
As well as social distancing between site staff and members of the public, workers will not be allowed to help visitors carry items.
The following rules for the centres will apply:
All 14 sites will be open on/from 12th May 2020.
Journeys must only be undertaken if your waste or recycling cannot be stored at home safely or disposed of safely by other means. By this we mean the waste cannot be stored without causing risk of injury, health or harm.
The sites are accepting normal waste streams with the exception of asbestos. Please do not bring asbestos to site but arrange for professional removal in due course.
Ideally only one person should attend, but if one additional passenger has to visit site, they must be from the same household.
Strict social distancing measures will be in place across all sites, which means that the number of visitors will be limited. If long queues form, people may be asked to go home and return another day/time.
All site users must adhere to the 2 metre social distancing rules in place.
The site operatives will not be permitted to help carry your waste, please do not ask them to and only bring what you can safely carry.
No vans, trailers or commercial vehicles of any type will be allowed on site.
No one should attend the site if they are shielding and/or self-isolating due to possible Covid-19 symptoms.
If any household had Covid-19 symptoms, then the waste should be left for 72 hours before being brought to site. Waste should be doubled bagged.
No pedestrians will be allowed on the site.
The current permitting scheme (for vans and pedestrians) will continue to be suspended and no permits will be issued.
Please check the council’s website before setting out to a HWRC
Councillor Celia Tibble, Cumbria County Council’s Cabinet member for Environment said: "Our District Council colleagues have done a great job in continuing to operate their waste collection services throughout this difficult time, but we know how much the household recycling centres have been missed, and our officers have been working really hard to get them to be able to safely re-open at the earliest possibility.
“However we would ask that residents only attend the sites for essential visits where they cannot safely store their extra recycling and waste at home and to be prepared to wait patiently, especially in the first few days of opening whilst the staff and the public become accustomed to the new way of working.
“The health and safety of both staff and our residents is our absolute priority and I’d like to thank you for your patience and resilience throughout these recent unprecedented times."
Find more information and the full list of recycling centres opening by visiting the council's website.