Montgomery County Environmental Services to hosts tire buy back this weekend
Old tires can be a public nuisance, a health hazard, and needlessly take up space in your garage. But this Sunday, they can bring you some cash at Montgomery County’s annual tire buyback. We spoke with Megan O'Leary, Public Information Officer for Montgomery County Environmental Services about the buyback.
Megan O'Leary: Tire buyback is our annual event where we basically offer residents $2 per tire. Any scrap tire that they bring in, we're willing to pay up to $2, up to ten tires. It's a great way to incentivize neighborhood cleanups and it's a good way to properly dispose of these scrap tires because they're ultimately repurposed.
Mike Frazier: And you just mentioned repurpose. What happens to the tires once they're dropped off?
O'Leary: They are shredded and then repurposed into playground flooring, benches, all sorts of post-shredded products.
Frazier: How many of these buybacks have you done in the past? And is this an annual thing?
O'Leary: Yes, it's annual. This is our 10th year, but our ninth event. We canceled the event in 2020 due to the pandemic, but it started in 2014.
Frazier: And what is the location of the buyback? Where can folks bring their tires?
O'Leary: It's our solid waste district in Moraine. We are located at 1001 Encrete Lane. And for the purpose of the tire buyback event, we ask residents to come down Encrete Lane and you'll pick it up through the Dorothy cross street. The event will be held from 9 to 1 on Sunday, September 18th.
Frazier: And It's not for businesses. It's just for residents.
O'Leary: Correct. It's for Montgomery County residents only. And proof of residency is required. So we will ask drivers for their driver's license or a utility bill or some sort of alternate way to confirm residency.
Frazier: How successful have your past buybacks been? Do you have numbers?
O'Leary: Our numbers from last year…in 2021, we saw just over 1200 vehicles in four hours, which is a lot. And then we also received 11,754 tires. And when you do the math, that's 304 vehicles per hour. But we're really hopeful for a good turnout this year. We've had really great community feedback so far. Our phones have been ringing for months now about this program. We've gotten great feedback on social media about it, so I think we're really, really anticipating another good year this year.
Frazier: Why are you doing this?
O'Leary: We are doing this because we get the tires out of the environment. It cleans up our streams and our yards and allows wildlife to be wildlife. But we do this really because it cleans up Montgomery County and we live here, we work here, we shop here, and we want to live in a good, clean community. If you have tires filled with water, it's a health hazard and it's just unsightly. So it's a good way to encourage residents to get out there and get involved. I think when people are more involved in their communities by physically cleaning it up, I think people tend to care about it more. And so that's why we do it.
Our tire buyback event was really dreamed up by John Woodman. He's our program specialist here at Montgomery County Environmental Services. And his idea, along with the resources that we have here at Montgomery County Environmental Services, really created the tire buyback program. And it has evolved into what we know it today. And it's such a seamless operation.
Frazier: I thought this was like something that other districts do. But apparently Montgomery County is being very innovative in this regard.
O'Leary: Sure we’ll take the credit for being the first ones. But again, it's something that serves everybody. So it's not like we're huddling our ideas to ourselves. We want everybody to do it. It makes America a cleaner place to be.
You still have time to get out there and find some tires, whether you've been collecting them or, you know a place where you see a bunch, you still have time to collect them and bring them on Sunday.
Tire buyback this Sunday from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. at 1001 Encrete Lane in Moraine. It’s two bucks a tire, 10 tires maximum. Tractor or oversized tires are not accepted; only pickup and car tires or smaller. And don’t forget to bring your ID.