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Tired Old Tires?

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People living in Valley Center and nearby unincorporated communities can recycle their old tires for free — and help the environment and their neighborhoods — May 14, when the County holds a “Tire Amnesty Day” at Valley Center Elementary School.

“This is a win-win-win,” said San Diego County Board of Supervisors Chairman Bill Horn. “Tire Amnesty days give people a way to properly recycle tires so they can be shredded and re-used to resurface roads. They also keep people from illegally dumping tires, which can turn our neighborhoods into eyesores and create public health hazards by collecting water and giving mosquitoes that can carry West Nile virus places to breed.”

People can recycle up to nine tires per vehicle at the event, which will run from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the school’s parking lot at 28751-L Cole Grade Road. Tires must be relatively clean, and can’t have an inside diameter larger than 16 ½ inches. Tires mounted on rims, large truck tires and tires from businesses or commercial sources will not be accepted.

San Diego County has been using state grants to put on tire amnesty days and educate the public about the benefits of tire recycling since 1993, when California banned people from tossing whole tires into landfills. In addition to being used to resurface roads, recycled tires can be used for new products, used in civil engineering projects or burned as fuel. In the last eight months, San Diego County has recycled nearly 4,000 tires collected in five previous tire amnesty days.

The May 14 event is sponsored by San Diego County’s Recycling Program, with support from the Valley Center-Pauma Unified School District, and funded by a grant from the California Department of Resources, Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle).

For more information, or to make arrangements to recycle larger tires, tires with rims, or loads of more than nine tires, call the County’s Recycling and Household Hazardous Waste Program at 1-877-R-1-EARTH (1-877-713-2784).