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Sheriff’s 'Safe and Secure' collection draws 100+ residents

Posted: October 13, 2009 11:34 a.m.
Updated: October 13, 2009 9:17 p.m.
Community members turned up early to beat the crowds at the city of Santa Clarita and Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff Station's semi-annual "Safe & Secure" community collection event held at the College of the Canyons campus on Saturday.

Sheriff's personnel from the local station and dozens of Sheriff's Explorers and other youth from the VIDA program worked throughout the day as residents lined up in their cars and trucks filled with personal documents for destruction and electronic waste for recycling.

"This is truly an amazing event, and it is nice to see the community support it through their attendance," Captain Anthony La Berge said. "It is incredible to see the lines of people here with the large amount of items being dropped off today."

Another total success is the only way to describe the six-hour event where four large trucks from Confidential Data Destruction were packed to capacity with more than 2,000 boxes of personal documents dropped off by their owners.

In total, approximately 35 tons of old tax records, bank statements, cancelled checks and other papers were ultimately shredded into tiny pieces before making their way to the final destination in the recycling process.

"This is a very green program that we share with our local community," said Steven Sturgeon, owner of Confidential Data Destruction. "It is important for our residents to respond to the growing threat of information and identity theft and shredding personal documents in a safe and secure manner is a key component to protecting one's identity."

Another growing component of this event was the safe collection of unused medication. When the event was over, 36 large cartons of old medication had been collected and will be destroyed through the sheriff's central property unit.

The event serves as another reminder that unneeded medication left in a home has potential for abuse or theft, and through programs such as this, the medication is not flushed in the toilet systems or thrown in landfills which could potentially affect our environment.

When the three large e-waste trucks left the college campus, they were packed with more than 110 pallets of televisions, monitors, computer processors and other electronics.

Ron Buchammer from Electronic Recyclers based in Fresno estimated his crew collected more than 65,000 pounds of electronic waste during the half-day event.

Safely disposing of electronics is not only good for the environment, but could prevent sensitive information stored in your computer from being compromised. Last year alone, Californians recycled more than 200 million pounds of e-waste through a variety of recycling programs.

The city and sheriff's station plan to continue the semi-annual tradition in spring 2010.


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