How to dispose of 'coronavirus litter' safely as video shows masks strewn across Sheffield street

Dumped face masks aren’t just an eyesore- they increase the risk of spreading Covid-19.

Wednesday, 5th August 2020, 4:40 pm

With residents now required to wear face coverings in shops, supermarkets and when using public transport, it’s important to dispose of them correctly in order to maintain safety during the pandemic.

Sheffield City Council have issued advice on this after footage emerged showing a Sheffield street scattered with abandoned face masks.

Ron Wiltshire, who posted the video on Twitter, said that the city was becoming ‘unrecognisable’, with one user commenting the video made him ‘sick’.

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(Photo by DAMIEN MEYER/AFP via Getty Images)

The Council said it recommends the use of reusable face masks as these can be washed, and then reused to prevent and reduce waste.

If you use disposable face coverings, they should be thrown away after each use, or as soon as they are damp.

If you need to dispose of your face covering, and no one in your household is self-isolating or showing symptoms of the coronavirus, you should follow this guidance:

Place them in your black bin if at home, or a litter bin if you are outside.

You do not need to put them in an extra bag, and you do not need to store them for a time before throwing them away.

Do not put them in a recycling bin as they cannot be recycled in your blue or brown bins.

If you or a member of your household is showing symptoms and self-isolating, you should continue to use your black bin collection service as normal, with the following important exceptions:

Store personal waste including used face coverings, tissues and disposable cleaning cloths securely within disposable rubbish bags.

Place each bag into another bag, tie them securely and keep separate from other waste.

Editor's message: Thank you for reading this story. The dramatic events of 2020 are having a major impact on our advertisers and thus our revenues. The Star is more reliant than ever on you taking out a digital subscription to support our journalism. You can subscribe here www.thestar.co.uk/subscriptions for unlimited access to Sheffield news and information online. Every subscription helps us continue providing trusted, local journalism and campaign on your behalf for our city. These bags should be put aside for at least 72 hours before being put in your black bin for collection.

Please do not take this waste to your local Household Waste Recycling Centre.

For up to date service updates during the coronavirus pandemic, visit: www.sheffield.gov.uk/waste

Editor's message: Thank you for reading this story. The dramatic events of 2020 are having a major impact on our advertisers and thus our revenues. The Star is more reliant than ever on you taking out a digital subscription to support our journalism. You can subscribe here www.thestar.co.uk/subscriptions for unlimited access to Sheffield news and information online. Every subscription helps us continue providing trusted, local journalism and campaign on your behalf for our city.