- Associated Press - Saturday, August 15, 2015

NEW BRITAIN, Conn. (AP) - Students cleaned out their dorm rooms months ago as they headed out for summer vacation. But for a small group, the clean out continued Friday morning as they lifted, pushed, and dragged old mattresses out from the residence halls at Central Connecticut State University and loaded them onto trucks to be carried away.

The mattresses, which needed to be replaced, won’t simply be thrown away, but will now be recycled.

“We’re starting a new recycling program for old mattresses,” CCSU Media Officer Janice Palmer said. “We replace 300 to 400 new mattresses each summer.”

The mattresses were packed into a tractor trailer and sent to a recycling plant in Canada.

For CCSU junior Raf Popek, who was one of a handful of students helping remove them from the dormitories, said he was happy the mattresses, not just at the university but statewide, are being recycled.

“It’s a really good thing,” he said. “Imagine if all of these were going into a landfill.”

The likes of juniors Matthew Brown and Mikal Scott-Williams, senior Adam Washington and sophomore Eric Zergiebel all agreed.

Standing in front of a large stack of mattresses waiting to be loaded onto a flatbed truck outside of James Hall, Brown simply said that it’s “great that we are able to recycle them.”

By state law all mattresses must now be recycled. In fact, the Connecticut Mattress Stewardship Plan requires a $9 recycling fee be charged at the time a new mattress is purchased.

In May, Connecticut became the first state in the nation with a statewide recycling program for used mattresses and box springs. The program, known as Bye Bye Mattress, is administered by the Mattress Recycling Council, a nonprofit organization created by the mattress industry to develop and manage the state mattress recycling program mandated by law in 2013.

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Information from: New Britain Herald, http://www.newbritainherald.com

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