Collections Call: Major Ont. used tire collection companies facing $200K fines for regulation non-compliance

Toronto, Ontario — Five major tire collection businesses in Ontario have run afoul of the province’s recycling regulator, according to reporting from the CBC, with each of the named companies now facing the prospect of six-figure fines.

Ontario’s Resource Productivity & Recovery Authority (RPRA) has officially called out five companies responsible for the collection of used tires for recycling, including eTracks Tire Management Systems; a firm that handles tire collections for numerous OEMs, amounting to about 80 percent of the province’s tire collections market.

In a statement issued by the RPRA last Thursday, the regulator pointed out a number of “shortfalls in the system”, the most obvious being the failure of 35 percent of companies listed in the provincial tire collections system to actually collect used tires.

Of the companies that accept used tires, the RPRA found that about half of them charge a collection fee, which is against provincial regulations. Another half refuse to accept tires on rims, which also amounts to non-compliance.

For these shortfalls, these companies face potential fines of up to $200,000 for the “economic benefit” reaped by not offering tire collection services. The named companies now have two months, starting last Wednesday, to facilitate an external audit that verifies their compliance with provincial regulations.

Steve Meldrum, CEO of eTracks, responded to the CBC’s request for comment, saying “Yes, we need to make sure that the collection system is meeting all the requirements, and we’ll do everything in our power to do that, but I believe it’s been a very successful program so far.”

He did, however, ask for additional clarity on the RPRA’s finding that 35 percent of listed companies were not even collecting tires.

“Does that mean they’re not in business?” Meldrum asked.

“Does that mean you showed up with four tires and they said ‘No?’ Does it mean that you called and got a summer student who answered and said, ‘I don’t know what this [tire collection] is?'”

Officials from the RPRA declined the CBC’s request for comment and clarity on Meldrum’s question, instead pointing to a regulation that mandates that at least one collection site be provided for every 3,000 people in a given municipality.

Toronto, for example, would therefore require more than 900 collection sites alone.

Click here for the RPRA’s full statement, and here for the most recent compliance orders issued by the organization.

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