Many workplaces and facilities use materials that cannot be simply thrown in the regular trash or washed down a drain, such as solvents, paint thinners, oils, batteries, fluorescent lights, and cleaning supplies. These materials are classified as potentially hazardous, which means they require special handling and disposal according to federal, state, and local regulations.
If you use some of these hazardous materials and have to manage them as part of your job, it’s important to know the basics on disposing of them, and know that help is available from places like Envirocare Hazmat when you need to know more about how to remove them from your facilities.
What is Hazardous Waste?
Materials classified as hazardous are dangerous of potentially harmful to people or to the environment. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has a list of hazardous waste that falls under specific regulations, or has characteristics that could cause it to be hazardous (such as being corrosive, toxic, reactive, or ignitable).
Hazardous Waste Disposal
When materials are on the list of hazardous waste, or have characteristics that could cause them to be hazardous, a company is prohibited from disposing of them in sinks, drains, or similar public sewer channels. This type of waste must be stored properly until it can be removed by a company like Envirocare Hazmat.
Materials should be labeled appropriately so anyone who comes into contact with the disposal containers will be able to identify what it is, and what potential dangers it presents. In addition, it must be packaged in leak-proof containers that safely keep contents from getting out, with some space at the top of the containers to allow for expansion or pressure buildup without overflowing.
If you’re not sure about the toxicity or other potential hazards of your materials, it’s important to get advice from someone who does know. Improper storage, labeling, or disposal could lead to fines, fees, and danger for your employees or others along the line.
Hazardous Material Transport
Unless you are specifically trained and have the appropriate equipment to transport hazardous materials, its best to leave it to a professional team. These professionals can also help you learn about proper labeling and classification of things like combustible or flammable liquids, which are required by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), and ensure that your materials get to their destination safely without any problems along the way.
To find out more about transport, storage, labeling, classification, or disposal of hazardous materials, call Envirocare Hazmat today.