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Alameda County Boaters: Register now for expired marine flare collection

by Scott Croft 2 Oct 11:49 PDT 18 October 2020
Need to dispose of expired marine flares? Register now to bring them to a special collection event on Sunday, Oct. 18. © Vivian Matuk, California State Parks and California Coastal Commission

Boat Owners Association of The United States (BoatUS) is urging Alameda County residents who own boats as well as those who keep their boats in the county to take advantage of a Marine Flare Collection Event to be held Sunday, Oct. 18. Alameda County recreational boaters wishing to drop off old marine flares must make an appointment at Appointments are available from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and the drop off location will be shared in the confirmation email. For additional information boaters can call (800) 609-6606 or visit

Marine flares are required to be carried aboard recreational boats for emergency signaling. However, because of a mandated 42-month expiration date from the date of manufacture, they need to be replaced about every three seasons of boating. Yet there are currently only two collection sites in California that will accept and dispose of outdated flares, presenting a safety hazard and disposal challenge.

The event is open to Alameda County residents or those who berth boats in the county. Proof of residency or marina berth is required. Those dropping off flares must wear a mask and remain in their vehicles while expired flares will be unloaded from an unlocked trunk or back cargo space. Only recreational boat marine-signaling devices such as handheld flares, aerial signals and smoke signals will be accepted. This excludes flares from commercial vessels, military, businesses or organizations.

The Alameda County Household Hazardous Waste Program is conducting this event with funding from the California Department of Recycling and Resource Recovery and in partnership with California State Parks and the California Coastal Commission California Boating Clean and Green Program.

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