Motor Vehicle Recycling

photo of a front end loader lifting a crushed car

Introduction

Maine law requires motor vehicle dismantling businesses to take certain actions to prevent contamination of Maine’s land, water and air. This includes proper handling of waste such as mercury switches and mercury-added lamps, waste fluids, air-conditioning refrigerants, batteries and tires, and implementation of a stormwater control plan.

Maine’s “Junkyards and Automobile Graveyards” law requires junkyards, automobile graveyards and auto recyclers to remove automotive fluids, refrigerants, batteries, mercury switches and mercury headlamps from non-operating vehicles within 180 days of receipt and before crushing or shredding of the vehicle. Yards that have more than 1320 gallons of oils, including gasoline, diesel, heating and waste oil, stored on site also must have a “Spill Prevention, Control and Countermeasures” (SPCC) plan.

Federal law requires businesses that buy auto scrap to have documentation from their suppliers that all fluids, mercury switches and lead-acid batteries have been removed from the vehicles. Also, all junkyards, automobile graveyards and auto recyclers must be licensed by their local municipality.

Contacts

Mercury Switch Removal Program
Enid J. Mitnik
(207) 287-8556 Enid.Mitnik@maine.gov

Small Business Assistance Program 1-800-789-9802
Julie Churchill
(207) 287-7881 Julie.M.Churchill@maine.gov

Stormwater Multi-sector General Permit Program
Aaron Dumont
(207) 215-7346 Aaron.Dumont@maine.gov

Laws

Laws covering junkyards, automobile graveyards and automobile recycling businesses

Mercury switch removal requirement

Forms

Certification of removal of fluids, batteries and mercury switches (pdf format)

Other Related Links

Guidelines

  • Model Auto Salvage Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan. Model Auto SWPPP (pdf file)

BMV Dealer Section - (207) 624-9000 ext. 52143 - (Off-Site)

Oil Spill Prevention, Control and Countermeasures

Safety Requirements for Above Ground Storage Tanks for Combustible Liquids (Off-Site)

Stormwater Permit Program for Auto Salvage Yards