AAA Great Battery Roundup® April 17–26


Motorists Urged to Recycle Old Vehicle, Motorcycle, Boat and Plane
Batteries to Give Low-Income Children First-Time Beach Experience

(LOS ANGELES, April 12, 2006) — The Automobile Club of Southern California's AAA Great Battery Roundup is about to get under way, and the Club is urging Southern California motorists to scour garages, carports, yards, tool sheds, storage areas and other places for used vehicle, motorcycle, boat and airplane batteries, and donate them at designated recycling sites.

For each battery "rounded up" and returned to one of the Auto Club's 209 designated recycling sites — AAA Approved Auto Repair facilities and Roadside Emergency Service towing contractors — from April 17–26, the AAA Battery Service will donate $1.50 to LA Surfbus, a group which provides first-time beach trips and marine science education to low-income children.

The organization was founded by former US Women's Surfing Champion Mary Setterholm after she witnessed a child drowning on the beach. The summer camp draws thousands of children from Southern California to its program annually. At camp they learn about ocean currents, sea life, tides and waves.

AAA Approved Auto Repair facilities will participate for the first time. Approximately 109 locations will serve as battery donation collection sites.

The goal of the AAA Great Battery Roundup campaign is to collect 1,000 batteries throughout the Southland. The battery roundup is a recycling campaign for AAA clubs nationwide.

"The impact of vehicle maintenance on the environment is often an overlooked aspect of responsible vehicle ownership," said Bill Howell, the Auto Club's AAA Battery Service Manager. Leaking battery acid can poison children and animals. It also seeps into the ground and pollutes soil and water, potentially affecting the quality of our drinking water supply. If batteries are disposed of near the ocean, the lead and sulfuric acid can threaten marine life, he added.

"The AAA Great Battery Roundup will help to remove batteries from the environment that can harm our ocean water from urban runoff," said Setterholm. "Our kids also will certainly benefit this summer from the funds generated by the recycling campaign," she added. "We very much appreciate that the Automobile Club of Southern California is making the public aware of the danger of discarded or improperly stored lead batteries," said Setterholm.

A city by city list of the drop off locations can be found at

Those who don't have a battery to contribute, but want to be part of the campaign, contributions can be sent to LA Surfbus, c/o 302 19th St., Hermosa Beach, CA 90254. Write in Auto Club/AAA Great Battery Roundup in the memo line of the check.

The Auto Club suggests the following battery recycling safety tips:

  • Consumers wear leather or protective disposable gloves and safety glasses when handling batteries.
  • For those transporting dead batteries for recycling, keep batteries upright and place them in a sturdy box or plastic container. Plastic containers can be purchased at local home-repair and auto parts centers.
  • If the battery case is cracked or leaking, be especially careful to choose a leak-proof container.
  • Consumers should not smoke near, or expose the batteries to, an open flame and make certain they will not shift and tip over in a moving vehicle.
  • Wash your hands thoroughly with warm water and soap afterwards, even though you wore gloves.