Julie Murphree

Julie Murphree

THOMASVILLE — The Keep Thomas County Beautiful (KTCB) executive director said Thomas County residents should properly dispose of cleaning supplies and personal protective equipment, including sanitizing wipes, masks and plastic gloves used during the coronavirus crisis.

“These belong in the trash, not on the ground,” said Julie Murphree. “We have been hearing from more and more people who are seeing wipes, gloves and other virus-related items on streets and walking trails or being left behind or near supermarkets and pharmacies.”

If the materials are not properly disposed of, there is a risk of spreading the life-threatentiag virus, she said.

If a store provides wipes to clean a cart, a trash receptacle probably is nearby, Murphree said. 

“If consumers are carrying their own wipes or gloves, make sure to properly dispose of used gloves, wipes and masks in a trash receptacle at the store or have a bag inside your vehicle to place the items in to dispose of at home,” she added.

Since local recycling methods have been suspended because of the deadly virus, Murphree suggested reduce, reuse and recycle.

Cardboard is a common recyclable material proliferating now with residents ordering many goods. Murphree said cardboard can be used in composting.

When buying take-out meals, let the business know you do not want plastic flatware, she said.

Murphree said another way to help the environment in the absence of local recycling is to avoid buying bottled water for home consumption.

Thomasville and Thomas County governments have suspended recycling programs because of worker safety and other limitations. 

“We will get through this, working together and looking out for one another,” Murphree said.

She said KTCB is monitoring the situation to ensure local recycling returns.

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