Marion learns from Wareham mistakes during Hazardous Waste Day

Nov 19, 2019

After extensive planning, a Hazardous Waste Day at Marion’s Benson Brook Transfer Station went smoothly on November 16. 

This stands in contrast to a similar hazardous waste collection day earlier this year in Wareham, which was marked by huge traffic backups, accidents, and people who waited for hours to drop off waste only to be turned away.

The fall waste day was put on by the Carver, Marion, and Wareham Regional Refuse Disposal District, but run by Town of Marion employees, waste disposal company ACV Enviro, and a selectman. 

“It’s going really well compared to what happened with Wareham,” said Marion Town Administrator Jay McGrail, who was there to check cars in along with Selectman Norm Hills. 

McGrail said that after the last hazardous waste day, the District and town spent a lot of time preparing for this one to make sure cars didn’t back up traffic on Route 6 — or to make sure the town had a plan if they did. 

He said when he arrived at 6:50 a.m. there were already five cars in line. The traffic reached the end of Benson Brook Road at one point, but collectors started to work more efficiently and they were able to avoid Route 6 spillover. Traffic remained consistent throughout much of the morning, and only about a dozen people were turned away for bringing regular household trash. 

Joe Ayres from the Marion Department of Public Works was there supervising the unloading. He said that after collection ended, he and the ACV workers would sort the last of the items into boxes on pallets. He would then use a backhoe to bring those pallets to a semi-trailer, which would haul the waste away. 

He said that people taking the time to dispose of hazardous materials properly was much better than throwing them in with regular trash. If they did so, Covanta SEMASS, which takes the District’s trash, would burn the materials, releasing hazardous chemicals into the air. 

No new cars were allowed to get in line after noon, but those in line were able to drop off their waste even after noon. 

The waste district also accepted hazardous waste in Carver.