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Program Allows Parents To Recycle Child Safety Seats

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(credit: CBS) John Lauritsen
John Lauritsen is a reporter from Montevideo, Minn. He joined WCCO-...
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WATERTOWN, Minn. (WCCO) — Parents know how fast their kids grow. So when they grow up, what do you do with their old car seats?

The Recycling Association of Minnesota is known for recycling holiday lights during the holidays. Now the group believes it’s come up with a solution for car seats that is convenient for parents and healthy for the environment.

They say the REseat program recycles used car seats and is the first of its kind in Minnesota.

“Basically, what we try to do here is act as a diversion point for folks to do the right thing and clean up the environment,” said Bill Fouks of the Carver County Recycling Center.

When it comes to recycling, car seats are a natural fit. They have plastic, cloth and metal. All materials that Maggie Mattacola said can and should be recycled.

“Child safety seats are very bulky. They take a long time to break down because of the type of material that they are. And it’s just a really great way to help out the environment,” said Mattacola, communications director for the Recycling Association of Minnesota.

State law doesn’t allow car seats to be passed on to other parents and they can’t be used after five years.

So Carver County, along with the Coon Rapids Recycling Center and Eco-Site in Watertown, are taking part in the REseat pilot program.

But it doesn’t come without challenges. The car seats take a lot of time to breakdown and recycle.

Still, it’s a program that is buckled up for the long haul.

“We usually get on the order of 15 to 20 seats a month. That’s what we are seeing and that’s with little advertising,” said Fouks.

The Recycling Association of Minnesota said the REseat program got its start because parents kept calling wondering what they could do with their used car seats. There is a $10 fee when you drop off your car seat at any of those locations.

Locations to drop off child safety seats for recycling include:

ATHC’s Eco-Site
676 Industrial Blvd.
Watertown, MN
Call 952-955-1130 for drop off hours

Coon Rapids Recycling Center
1831 111th Avenue NW
Coon Rapids, MN

Carver County Environmental Center
116 Peavey Circle
Chaska, MN

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