Old tires stacking up? Amnesty day in Hernando allows free disposal

Mosquitoes lay their eggs in stagnant ware and old tires left outside hold that water. To get ahead of the spring mosquito breeding season and remove as many old tires from the environment, Hernando County is staging a tire disposal amnesty day Jan. 23, at which residents can dispose of old tires for free.

Old tires are unsightly, but did you know they can be a hazard to your health?

The danger comes in a roundabout kind of way. The tires aren’t dangerous, but when lying about outdoors, they collect water and are an ideal breeding place for mosquitoes, which carry some diseases.

Because the state imposes a tire disposal fee, people sometimes are hesitant to haul them away and pay the price, which leads to illegal dumping. Hernando County solid waste facilities allow disposal of up to eight tires a year at no cost, but to encourage the collection and disposal, the county holds an amnesty day during which an unlimited number of tires may be dropped off.

This year’s amnesty is Jan. 23 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Hernando County Fairgrounds, 6436 Broad St., Brooksville. During amnesty day, passenger car and semi tires without rims are accepted by those who can show proof of county residency. Commercial operators may not take advantage of the opportunity.

There will be workers to stack tires but residents are responsible for unloading tires and placing them in containers. They also will provide information materials related to protecting themselves and their home environments from mosquitoes. The fewer old tires holding water by spring, when mosquitoes begin more active reproduction, the better.

Funding for amnesty day was approved by the County Commission in the 2020-2021 budget, but the Florida Department of Environmental Protection will reimburse Hernando for the full cost of collection and disposal of tires.

For those who miss the tire amnesty day, a maximum of eight tires in a 12-month period can be dropped at any one of the following locations at no cost:

• West Hernando Convenience Center, 2525 Osowaw Blvd. (CR 595), Spring Hill. 352-754-4770. Open Tuesday – Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday, 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. Closed Sunday, Monday, New Year’s Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day.

• East Hernando Convenience Center, 33070 Cortez Blvd., Ridge Manor. 352-540-6205 Open Tuesday – Saturday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Closed Sunday, Monday, New Year’s Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day.

• Northwest Solid Waste Facility (Main Landfill) 14450 Landfill Road, Brooksville. 352-754-4112. Open Monday – Saturday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Closed Sunday, New Year’s Day, Independence Day, Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day.

Contact the Hernando County Mosquito Control Department at 352-540-6552 or visit www.HernandoCounty.us/mosquito for more information.