Durham County Council has removed the traffic management systems that were set up in May last year to support the safe reopening of HWRCs during the coronavirus pandemic.

The measures have been removed from most of the county’s HWRCs and are no longer in place at Coxhoe, Heighington, Hett Hills, Horden, Pity Me, Bishop Auckland, Seaham, Thornley Station and Tudhoe.

However, traffic management will continue to be in place at Annfield Plain to support the ongoing works to develop a low carbon site and large-scale solar farm at the Morrison Busty Depot.

In line with government guidance, vehicle access will continue to be monitored at each site and only one person is allowed onto a recycling platform at a time to ensure safe social distancing for visitors and staff.

Residents are being encouraged to check how busy their local HWRC is before visiting by using the council’s online map which shows the traffic levels for each site using a traffic light system.

To ensure queues are kept to a minimum, residents are also being asked to consider whether their journey to a recycling centre is essential and to visit another site if their local HWRC is busy.

Cllr Mark Wilkes, Durham County Council’s Cabinet member for neighbourhoods and climate changes, said: “We have lifted the temporary measures on the majority of the county’s HWRCs which will help to improve traffic flow at some of our sites, and remove the significant cost of these traffic systems.

“However, we are still in a pandemic so it is important that residents visit our HWRCs safely by remaining socially distant from others while using the site, and visiting sites at quieter times where possible.”

To see the traffic map for each HWRC, and for more information on each site, visit www.durham.gov.uk/hwrc