Kelowna bottle depot remains open despite COVID-19 concerns

The Columbia Bottle depot was busy with customers Wednesday morning

The Columbia Bottle Depot on St. Paul Street in Kelowna was a flurry of activity, Wednesday morning.

All three locations of Columbia Bottle Depot are remaining open despite Prime Minister Justin Trudeau repeatedly asking Canadians to stay inside and to practice social distancing if they must leave the house, during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The bottle depot is not only a bottle service but a recycling service as well said Clare Cassan, owner of Columbia Bottle Depot.

In addition to supplying breweries with cans and bottles, the depot recycles all products that the city doesn’t take on curbside collections such as styrofoam, glass and plastic.

Cassan explained he plans on keeping his business up and running, deeming his business an essential service for waste diversion.

“We believe that we provide an essential service for waste management,” said Cassan.

“We intend on staying open as long as we can keep everyone safe.”

Many of those using the bottle depot, on Wednesday morning, were clients of the temporary shelter Welcome Inn. Two clients, who did not wish to be named, said they come to the depot every day with bottle returns as they need the money.

They hoped the bottle depot would stay open so they can continue to make returns to help supplement their limited income.

READ MORE: Why you don’t know which B.C. city has COVID-19 cases: Interior Health explains

The bottle depot is only allowing one customer in at a time to make returns and those who have to wait outside must stand two metres apart from each other.

“We’ve had to make a number of changes to keep our employees safe and our customers safe,” said Cassan.

“We’re practicing social distancing. We limit the number of people in our depot and our staff has personal protective equipment. We have lines on the floor to keep customers away from employees.”

READ MORE: United Way launches COVID-19 response plan to support the most vulnerable

At the location on Dease Road, the depot has placed sorting tables outside the depot with separation from each other.

Cassan said he also has seen a spike in new customers due to layoffs in connection to the COVID-19 pandemic.

For now, Cassan said he will be taking it day by day, monitoring government announcements and following its guidelines.


Daniel Taylor
Reporter, Kelowna Capital News
Email me at daniel.taylor@kelownacapnews.com
Follow me on Twitter

Coronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

COSAR attends one search and two rescues over long weekend

Teams searched for a missing cliff jumper, were called out to a sinking boat and an injured ATVer

EDITORIAL: Improving highway safety

Highway 97 has seen plenty of collisions and accidents over the years

Kelowna house and hip hop artist grows in popularity with new single

Edge’s ‘Vice City Vibes’ is available on all streaming platforms now

UPDATE: Rose Valley Dam wildfire in West Kelowna knocked back on all flanks

The fire is three hectares in size and was first reported at around 2:30 p.m. on Aug. 2.

VIDEO: Otter pups learn to swim at B.C. wildlife rescue facility

Watch Critter Care’s Nathan Wagstaffe help seven young otters go for their first dip

New North Okanagan fire hall breaks ground

Groundwork is on tap for a new community firehall. Site works are… Continue reading

Princeton man faces charges after allegedly receiving ‘drunk driving’ lesson

The incident happened in the early morning hours of Friday, Aug. 1

VIDEO: Wildfire erupts north of Sicamous above Shuswap Lake

Observers suspect fireworks sparked blaze, Wildfire BC states cause still unknown

Canadians can travel to Hawaii in September; no quarantine with negative COVID test

Travellers will be required to pay for their own tests prior to arriving

Alberta to require masks at schools this fall, but still no mandate in B.C.

B.C. students are also set to return to classrooms in September

Anonymous letters tell Vancouver Island family their kids are too loud

Letter said the noise of kids playing in Parksville backyard is ‘unbearable’

Police watchdog investigates Kamloops RCMP after stabbing death

The IIO is investigating the police’s lack of success in locating the man charged in stabbing

Forty-three properties near Dry Lake, along Highway 5A, under evacuation alert

Wildfire has been burning out of control north of Princeton for two days

Most Read