Beckley Sanitary Board reminds people to throw away disposable masks


A discarded face mask lies in the street in San Francisco, Wednesday, March 17, 2021. Disposable masks, gloves and other personal protective equipment have safeguarded untold lives during the pandemic. They’re also creating a worldwide environmental problem, littering streets and sending an influx of harmful plastic into landfills and oceans. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

BECKLEY, WV (WVNS) — As people continue to wear face masks during the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s important to throw them out. Employees at the Beckley Sanitary Board said the disposable masks can end up in small streams and creeks, and harm wildlife.

“The animals can get tangled up in things. But also anytime you’ve got something that has any kind of plastics in it those microplastics as it degenerates the microplastics become a pollutant as well,” Luke Stevens, Environmental Specialist, said.

Stevens said if you do pick up a mask off the ground, take precautions like wearing gloves so you do not catch any germs.

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