Thursday, 7 June 2012


It's summertime in the Irish countryside, difficult to believe some days, but honestly I checked the calendar. Here in County Kildare we are surrounded by natural beauty. Our business backs on to the world famous Curragh. It's as green as it gets at the moment. It's great to see the jockeys out training the thoroughbreds in the morning as I drive to work.
In our back yard our summer visitors, the swallows, criss cross the yard hunting for flies on the long summer days. They nest in the eaves of our building and on the ledges in the corner of our Scrap Tyre container.

They have neglected to notice that it is on wheels. Every month or so when it's full we have the forty foot container picked up and replaced by Crumb Rubber Ireland. Naturally this presents a difficulty for the swallows as the container is then shipped to Dundalk. Whilst I remember hearing on the radio, that on the Rhine in Germany, the swallows nest on barges. They hunt on the river and follow the boats as they go from Koblenz to wherever. It doesn't bother them apparently and they treat the boat as a sort of mobile home. However a forty foot container travelling at 100kph up the M1 would probably present an altogether different prospect.

I asked Nigel our floor manager about this the other week when I noticed the birds were building a nest. He explained to me that it wasn't a problem. When the new container comes, it's exactly the same design. He uses a ladder to access the ledge. Then places the nest and birds on a tray which he then replaces in the same corner of the new container. As he explained, the birds get agitated for a time but settle down and adapt to their new home quickly. They've been coming back for years so it mustn't bother them too much. I thought that this was a nice story from an industry that doesn't have the greatest environmental reputation.

The Simpsons always provides good social commentary on a range of issues. Murdoch, Nuclear Energy and the Tyre industry are open season. Springfield's only major tourist attraction is the Tire Fire, burning since 1989.
Thankfully there are no Tyre fires in Ireland. There are however Tyre stockpiles. In recent years, loopholes in legislation allowed some scrap merchants to stockpile waste tyres on the basis that they ''intended'' to dispose of them in an environmentally friendly manner. In some cases over one million tyres were accumulated in quarries in the west of Ireland or even in fields. Retailers had been lured by a cheaper fee for removal and convinced by the scrap licence credentials that all was legitimate. Once collected, the tyres have been left discarded by unscrupulous dealers who have declared insolvency. The result is an environmental mess which must be cleaned up at the expense of the taxpayer. Waste tyres are not biodegradable and cannot be buried in landfill. They have a high oil and carbon component and can be regarded as a pollutant.
At Heffernan Tyres we have never compromised on the environment. We have used Crumb Rubber Ireland for years. We never entertained claims from cut price merchants who promised that they would do the right thing with our waste. The only way to operate in the space of tyre disposal is to have the plant and equipment to carry out the job. Crumb Rubber Ireland tick all of the boxes. They have a state of the art facility in Dundalk and have received much acclaim for the service they provide including a Green Award 2010.This is what they do,
 "Tyres are 100% recyclable. We process end of life tyres into shred, chips and granulate for Rubber mats and coloured garden chippings for the sports and leisure industry' . We produce new and innovative products in our manufacturing plant and through this process ensure that the waste tyres we take in are taken, in their entirety, out of the waste stream."

So, when and where choosing to purchase your tyres, don't be embarrassed about asking where the take offs are going. You are paying for it after all and if it's not done properly we all pay. Alternatively shop where you know that quality and standards are never compromised. At Heffernan Tyres that is our commitment.

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