Thousands of cars lined up in and around the Via Princessa Metrolink Station Saturday for the first household hazardous collection waste event of the year after previous ones were canceled due to the pandemic. The event prompted a traffic advisory in the area.
The event, held by Los Angeles County, invites residents to safely dispose of items too toxic to throw in the trash, such as brake fluid, paint, car batteries, computers, televisions and cellphones.
The first roundup had been scheduled to take place at College of the Canyons, but due to the COVID-19 crisis, the events were canceled countywide. Its return on Saturday brought out a large response compared to what is typically seen annually, according to Juan Sanchez, a manager on site.
“Typically, at College of the Canyons and here, we see about 1,200 to 1,700 people. But, today, we are expecting an attendance of about 3,000 (to) 3,500,” he said.
Saturday’s drive-thru event was adjusted to comply with safety measures, asking visitors to remain in their vehicles with windows closed if possible, wear face coverings and refrain from attending if they had any COVID-19 symptoms, been asked to quarantine or had recently traveled internationally.
About 80 event workers also donned face coverings and set up stations to segregate items at a distance from each other.
The Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station announced a traffic advisory in the area following the large response, where vehicles lined up on Via Princessa as far back from Whites Canyon Road and Soledad Canyon Road and from Sierra Highway and Soledad Canyon Road.
Directing traffic into the Metrolink Station was Luis Llerena with the county’s Sanitation Districts, who said visitors thanked them for holding the event.
“They were saying, ‘You should have had more,’ but we explained we couldn’t because of COVID-19, and drivers were thanking us for being here since they were on lockdown for a while,” he said. “These events are very important because they provide the public with a method to safely dispose of items in a legal and environmentally friendly way.”
For additional information, visit lacsd.org/hhw.