Littered gloves and masks could contaminate rivers, according to environmental experts

Local News

MONTGOMERY COUNTY, Ohio (WDTN) – Gloves are great for protecting your hands from unknown germs and viruses, but it’s also important that you protect the environment and your neighbors from those same germs by disposing of them properly according to Montgomery County Environmental Service officials.

“I think people are shopping with their carts, they get to their car and they don’t want to take the gloves home with them so instead of placing them in the receptacle they’re just putting them on the ground,” said Bob Downing, Assistant Director of Environmental Services.

Beth Moore, also Assistant Director of Environmental Services, says this practice is not only harmful to the environment, it’s counterproductive to preventing the spread of COVID-19.

“When it rains anything in the parking lot gets flushed through the storm drains and the storm drain is a direct path to the river. We don’t want that litter to end up in our rivers,” she said.

Littering of gloves has been reported at local Wal-Mart and Sams Club stores. Some of these locations are actively working to prevent the littering with maintenence workers cleaning the parking lot more often and store workers being present at exits for proper disposal.

Downing suggests shoppers bring plastic bags when they go on shopping trips to properly dispose of gloves and masks.

“Put them in a plastic bag and put them right in your regular trash. If you’re at all concerned you can even close that trash bag with some duct tape or something. But that would be a safe and certainly a reliable way to dispose of that material,” said Downing.

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