Tag Archives: tires

DHEC in the News: Opioids, abandoned tires, flood-prone homes

Here’s a look at health and environmental news from around South Carolina.

Fighting Opioid overdoses on the front lines

Nearly 100 people a day are dying from opioid overdoses, it’s part of a growing issue that South Carolina is not immune to.

In the past 3 years, opioid related deaths have risen 18%. That crisis is causing police officers to equip departments with a overdose reversal drug known as Narcan.

South Carolina Health Officials Propose Fines Over Old Tires

CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) — Health officials in South Carolina are proposing fines for a recycling company because of abandoned tires that serve as a mosquito breeding ground.

The Department of Health and Environmental Control has proposed more than $1 million in civil penalties against the 21-acre (8.5-hectare) Viva Recycling operation in Berkeley County, The Post and Courier of Charleston reported.

Health officials say the company has more than 200,000 abandoned tires in Berkeley County. DHEC says the company has not paid the $1.65 million in fines yet.

General Interest

‘A huge shift in our mindset’ – Charleston looks at how best to treat flood-prone homes

In a move that one Charleston preservation leader called “a sea change,” the city will be more receptive than ever to property owners’ requests to elevate their homes or other buildings, even along its most historic streets.

The city held a day-long workshop Friday to discuss design solutions that would allow historic buildings to be elevated while minimizing disruption to the city’s ambiance, one that has given the city a national reputation and fueled its multimillion-dollar tourist economy.

The workshop came several weeks after Tropical Storm Irma flooded dozens of historic homes downtown, many for the third time in as many years.

DHEC in the News: Tire recycling, Hilton Head beaches, new treatment for heart failure

Here’s a look at health and environmental news from around South Carolina.

Homeland Park residents cheer closing of tire recycling business

Homeland Park resident Steve Allen’s wife suffers from respiratory problems. But he said she can breathe better now that the tire recycling business near their home has closed.

Dave Homesley, who also lives close to the now-defunct Viva Recycling on Abbeville Highway, says the dust, fumes and noise created by business were a “catastrophe.”

“It has been very, very, very traumatic,” Homesley said.

Viva Recycling’s facilities in Anderson County and Monck’s Corner north of Charleston both shut down a few months ago. The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control revoked the operating permits for both sites in September.

3 weeks after Irma, are Hilton Head waters safe to swim in yet?

Three weeks after Tropical Storm Irma, there’s some good news for Hilton Head Island residents and visitors.

The beaches are safe to swim in, according to water quality test results from the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control.

The department collected beach monitoring samples in the Hilton Head on Sept. 20 and the results were “satisfactory,” according to a DHEC spokesperson.

General Interest

New treatment for heart failure sought in research led by Clemson University

CLEMSON — Heart-attack damage could be repaired with stem cells and tiny “nanowires” as part of a new research project that involves all three of South Carolina’s major research universities and is backed by $1.5 million from the National Institutes of Health.

Ying Mei, an assistant professor of bioengineering at Clemson University, is leading the project.

Spare old tires second lives as mosquito havens, nuisances and hazards  

Old, discarded vehicle tires might not have the get up and go they used to, but if we don’t properly dispose of them they operate just fine when it comes to aiding and accelerating the growth of the mosquito population.

Tires are ideal breeding sites for several species of mosquitoes that could carry diseases such as Zika, dengue and chikungunya. They collect leaves and easily fill up with water when it rains, making them perfect places for mosquito larvae to thrive.

Considering the fact that South Carolinians generate more than 4.5 million waste tires every year, it’s critical that we dispose of them in the right manner.

Recycling is the best solution

Here’s how you as a citizen can help:

  • When you purchase a new tire, leave the old one with the dealer.
  • If you have tires around your home, toss out any water they might be holding, keep them dry and cover them or store them inside. If you don’t have a use for keeping them, the best solution is to recycle discarded tires. Most counties have collection programs that accept a minimal number of waste tires (usually about five) at drop-off recycling centers. Check with your local recycling coordinator or call the Office of Solid Waste Reduction and Recycling at 1-800-768-7348 for a drop-off center near you.
  • Report tire dumping and unpermitted storage of waste tires. Contact your local litter control office or the local DHEC Environmental Health Services Office. To find your local litter office go to org/about/ and select your county. DHEC offices are listed at www.scdhec.gov/HomeAndEnvironment/DHECLocations/.

Properly discarding tires helps control mosquito populations and combats mosquito-borne diseases, and it also prevents potential fire hazards and removes unsightly nuisances. Recycled tires can be turned into valuable products like rubberized asphalt or crumb rubber applications that can be used in road projects, playgrounds, sport facilities and even erosion-resistant beach walls.

School of Deaf and Blind 2 (2)

Recycled tires can be used to construct sports facilities.

In South Carolina, DHEC is working to identify responsible parties to remove and manage illegally dumped tires. But while it’s critical to cleanup existing piles, the best solution is to prevent such piles from forming in the first place.

Be responsible and lawful

It’s going to take responsible, informed, lawful efforts on the part of those who sell, buy, transport or process tires to avoid the creation of waste tire heaps:

  • If you transport more than 15 waste tires at any one time in South Carolina, you must be registered as a hauler. Be sure to obtain a waste tire hauler permit.
  • A permit also is required to process waste tires, including the use of mobile shredders.
  • The storage of waste tires typically requires a waste tire collection permit. Certain exemptions apply to new or scrap tire dealers, tire retreaders, tire manufacturers, permitted solid waste facilities, businesses that remove tires from motor vehicles and agricultural users.

Here’s where the rubber meets the road: Once tires have lost their get up and go, dispose of them properly. Spare them a second life as mosquito havens, nuisances and environmental hazards.