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Planet Patrol Covid Guidelines and Litter Picking Health and Safety 

This page is updated as government guidance on COVID-19 changes, to ensure you protect your own safety and that of others. The latest government advice for England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland can be found here: – please ensure that you are up to date with advice for your local area before doing a litter pick.

Guidance on litter picking safely*:

We’ve put together some guidance to support you in making your litter picks as safe as possible. The below is guidance for you to consider:

  • Wash your hands (before and after litter picking) and carry hand sanitiser if you have some. Don’t touch your face until you’ve washed or sanitised your hands. Guidance on how to wash your hands here.
  • Wear reusable protective gloves, such as gardening gloves, and do not share gloves with other people (wash and sanitise gloves after use if reusable). We recommend that you don’t touch or pick up litter with your bare hands. If you choose to do this, please carry hand sanitiser and wash hands well.
  • Use a litter picker
  • Use your own reusable bag or bucket to collect litter in (wash and sanitise after use)
  • To help keep you safe by following government advice, if you collect littered face coverings or PPE, handle these with care. Dispose of them in general waste, not in a recycling bin. Only collect such waste if you feel comfortable doing so.
  • We recommend that you do not pick up:
    • Needles / syringes – make a note of their location and inform your local council.
    • Sharp objects such as broken glass
    • Potentially hazardous objects such as unidentified cans or canisters, oil drums and chemical containers
    • Dead animals, human faeces and organic matter
    • Heavy items – you can report fly tipping or illegally dumped items to your local authority.
  • Avoid hazardous areas such as deep or fast-flowing water, steep, slippery or unstable banks, sharp rocks, derelict buildings, busy roads and electric fences (which are identified by yellow warning signs).
  • Don’t disturb wildlife or natural habitats, such as birds nests
  • Follow your national and local Government coronavirus guidance and regulations. Keep your distance from others whilst litter picking (2m – 6 ft – apart) if preferred. Please ensure that you are up to date with advice for your local area
  • Once collected, please dispose of your findings properly. Some litter can be recycled – check locally what can and can’t be recycled. If it can’t be recycled, put in a public or your home general waste bin.

Our organised group clean ups

Planet Patrol’s organised activity clean ups follow the latest Government and Sports England guidance relating to coronavirus which you can find here, and are outlined below:

  • Clean up leaders and participants maintain a safe two metre distance. Through demonstration and clear explanation we will ensure social distancing is maintained.
  • Good hygiene practices are in place
  • Equipment is disinfected regularly and between sessions
  • Before attending a session you must sign the digital consent form that is sent to you. If you have Covid symptoms, are contacted by a track and trace and told to self-isolate or suspect you’ve been exposed to the virus must let Planet Patrol know and you must not attend the clean up session. Your deposit will be refunded.
  • Clean up participants must inform Planet Patrol if they have show any symptoms, contracted COVID-19 or been told to isolate, since booking their Planet Patrol clean up session. We will contact all individuals from your session and inform them to isolate and get a COVID-19 test and follow the government rules.

See it. Snap it. Map it – track brands you find

Remember to track the litter you find. Simply take a photo and record the brands you find in our app. We can use this data to stop polluters and influence change.

If you don’t feel comfortable picking up litter you can still make a difference by using our app, Planet Patrol. The data you collect is vital evidence that brands and government cannot ignore. All you have to do is take a photo and no touching needed! 

You can download the app for free here:

Stay safe everyone!

Best practices:

  • No single-use bin bags to collect litter in – this just adds more plastic to landfill! Use a reusable bag or container – like a bucket or garden trug!
  • Separate litter into recyclables and non-recyclables (follow hygiene guidance above) – litter is often products that can be recycled and this material is valuable. You can reintroduce it back into the economy by recycling it.
  • Record what you find in our global database as per above! This is evidence to hold brands and government to account and help develop solutions!
*Planet Patrol does not accept any liability for contraction of COVID-19 or injury for anyone who undertakes litter picking.

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