Tag Archives: hazardous waste

Keep your family safer: get rid of unwanted hazardous products

 

You can’t watch children all the time.  So how can you keep them safer?ChildReachingCupboard

If you have unwanted hazardous products you could get them out of your home and away from curious hands.

How can you tell which products under the sink or in the closet are hazardous?

Look on the label.  If you see the words DANGER or POISON, that means the product is very harmful.

If you see the words CAUTION or WARNING, that means the products is somewhat harmful.

And if you don’t see CAUTION, WARNING, DANGER OR POISON on the product label, that means the product is safer to use.

So if you want to get rid of hazardous products you don’t want, what do you do?

Getting rid of hazardous products you no longer use can help keep you and your family safer.

Cleaning up in South Seattle

AutoRecy_SSeattle_Bef5_Mar2015

Before

AutoRecy_SSeattle_After1_Mar2015

After

What did it take to get this auto dismantling business to stop storing hundreds of gallons of hazardous wastes outside with no protection from the elements?

Stepping onto this site you wouldn’t know from the dark stains of automotive fluids on the property, the potential fire hazard of the 500 gallons of used oil that was stored near an electrical panel and the storm water that ran off the property onto neighboring sites, that nine different environmental and health agencies had separately visited this site to give technical, non-enforcement help.

Despite the best efforts of various agencies, the business owner continued to ignore their advice.

Fortunately, this story has a happy ending. The numerous agencies started coordinating with each other through the Interagency Compliance Team (ICT). ICT works with the various agencies to develop a strategy and then starts implementing interventions. In this case, the Seattle Fire Department, Seattle Public Utilities and OSHA issued citations; Public Health – Seattle & King County issued a Notice of Violation and Notice and Order to the property owner.

The result? Nine hundred gallons of hazardous waste were removed from the property.  The business owner stopped operating his business and cleaned up the property. Storm water pollution and environmental impacts to neighboring properties also stopped as did the continued chemical exposures to the community and the environment from the property.

Under the umbrella of ICT, representatives from nine agencies coordinated with the business and the property owner to get the site cleaned up: the Washington State Patrol, Seattle Fire, King County Storm Water, King County Industrial Waste, Department of Ecology, Public Health – Seattle & King County, Seattle Public Utilities, Department of Ecology, Division of Occupational Safety & Health (OSHA), and the Local Hazardous Waste Management Program in King County.

Thanks to these agencies for working together to keep businesses on track so we can all breathe easier.

Local Hazardous Waste Management Program in King County Releases 2014 Annual Report

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In 2014, the Program provided direct service to 90,000 people who visited our hazardous waste collection facilities, attended our trainings and had an Environmental Investigator visit their business.  It provided indirect service to over 200,000 people through our Website and Facebook page.  Read the full report.

The Local Hazardous Waste Management Program in King County is a multijurisdictional program whose mission is to reduce the threat posed by the production, use, storage and disposal of hazardous materials, thereby protecting public health and environmental quality. Program partners include the Seattle Public Utilities, King County Department of Natural Resources and Parks, Public Health – Seattle & King County, and cities and tribes in King County.

 

The Wastemobile is back!

Wastemobile 8

Early signs of Spring include crocuses, magnolia blossoms, early-blooming rhodies and …. the Wastemobile!

Bring the hazardous waste that you’ve accumulated over the long winter to the first Wastemobile of 2015 in Bothell, WA.

Find it in the Seattle Times parking lot at 19200 120th Ave NE between 10 to 5 from February 27th through March 1.

Think you don’t have hazardous waste in your house, garage or shed? Chances are you do. Hazardous waste includes burnt out fluorescent bulbs, CFL bulbs (twirly bulbs), most unwanted household cleaners, batteries, and much more. Find a complete list here.

This great service is free because it’s already been paid for in your utility bill.

Year-round disposal service for household hazardous waste

Household disposal open all year round

The traveling Wastemobile – the service that goes from city to city to collect hazardous waste from households in King County – has stopped for the winter. But do not despair, we still offer year-round disposal services for households in King County at four different locations. Some small businesses may qualify to bring their wastes here as well.  The locations are

You can bring your unwanted household hazardous products – that say CAUTION, WARNING, DANGER or POISON on them. Just about the only exception to this is latex paint. You can now harden the paint and throw it in the garbage. Instructions here.

Check out this handy list of what you can and cannot bring.

We also have tips on how to transport your waste so it doesn’t spill in your vehicle or on you or one of your passengers.

For those of you with elderly friends or neighbors or who are otherwise disabled, we have a wonderful Home Collection Program.

Please take advantage of this wonderful program. It is paid for in your utility bill, so there is no charge when you drop off your waste.  What a deal!

Flood season is coming – seven tips to help you get ready.

Wastes in water_autorepairfloodohio2007

Flood season is coming – Follow these tips to get ready —

Tip #1 :- Safely dispose of unwanted household hazardous products. It’s considered hazardous if it has CAUTION, WARNING, DANGER or POISON on the label (look in the lower left part of the container). Disposal locations here.

Tip # 2 – Computers and TVs often contain hazardous parts. Prevent these from getting into flood waters. If you have any you’re not using, recycle them at one of these locations.

Tip # 3 – Keep your medicines out of the flood waters. Store them in an upper shelf if possible. Safely dispose of any unwanted medicines before flood season. Locations here.

Tip # 4 – Reduce the amount of hazardous products you have on hand. Replace them with the safest products you can find.

Tip # 5 – If safe to do so, store hazardous products on an upper shelf or in a second story area.

Tip # 6 – Keep your household products in their original containers, and make sure they’re tightly closed.

Tip # 7 Sign up for flood warnings.

Wastemobile coming to Covington June 13 – 15, offering free household hazardous waste disposal

Find upcoming collections and convenient, permanent disposal sites

All King County and city residents can safely dispose of old car batteries, oil, paint thinner and many other household hazardous items at no cost when the Wastemobile makes its second stop of the year in Covington, June 13-15.

 The Wastemobile will be in the parking lot of the Fred Meyer, at 16735 SE 272nd St., from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day.

 Residents can drop off household hazardous waste items including pesticides, oil-based paints, automotive products (oil, antifreeze, auto batteries, etc.), fluorescent bulbs/tubes and other items without a charge. The service is pre-paid through garbage and sewer utility fees.

 The Wastemobile goes to Bothell next

Following its stop in Covington, the Wastemobile heads north to Bothell for a household hazardous waste collection event June 27-29 in the parking lot of the Seattle Times building, 19200 120th Ave. NE.

 About the Wastemobile

Celebrating its 25th anniversary in 2014, the Wastemobile was the first traveling hazardous waste disposal program in the nation. It is operated by the Local Hazardous Waste Management Program and goes throughout the county from the spring through fall.

 Residents help protect the environment and public health by safely disposing of the hazardous materials and keeping them out of drains and landfills. During the past quarter century, the Wastemobile has collected more than 16,000 tons of hazardous household waste from 450,000 customers.

 The Wastemobile also provides free reusable products to the public, such as oil-based paint, stain and primer, plus wood care and cleaning products. These products are subject to availability, and residents must sign a release form prior to receiving the materials.

 More disposal solutions: Visit the permanent collection site

For south King County residents, the Auburn Wastemobile, is a convenient alternative for disposing of household hazardous waste. It is located in the northwest parking lot of The Outlet Collection (formerly the Auburn SuperMall), 1101 Outlet Collection Dr., SW, near Sports Authority. It operates every Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

 Qualifying businesses may also use the no cost disposal services. Call 206-296-4692, or find details at www.hazwastehelp.org/BusinessHazWaste.

 For more information

For more information about disposal, including acceptable materials and quantity limits, call the Hazards Line at 206-296-4692, Monday through Friday between 9 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., except holidays. Recorded information is available after hours, or by visiting the Wastemobile website at www.HazWasteHelp.org.

The Wastemobile is one of the services provided by the Local Hazardous Waste Management Program through a partnership of more than 40 city, county and tribal governments working together in King County to reduce threats posed from hazardous materials and wastes.

 

Proposed new business/multi-family rate structure

The Local Hazardous Waste Management Program in King County fulfills local government responsibilities under state law[i] for managing hazardous waste. We provide for safe disposal of hazardous materials and wastes from residents and businesses that produce small amounts of hazardous waste in King County, as well as a range of services and prevention programs to reduce exposure and risk from hazardous waste.The Program is funded by local hazardous waste fees on solid waste (garbage) and sewer accounts, and nominal fees charged at transfer stations. Monthly local hazardous waste fees are a small part of your garbage bill; your solid waste hauler collects them and sends them to the Program. This monthly fee currently is $1.08 for residents and $11.24 for businesses[ii].

We are putting forth a proposal to the Board of Health for consideration in April — related to the way local hazardous waste fees are assessed to business and multi-family solid waste accounts. Currently, these fees on solid waste accounts are assessed as a flat rate.  Under the pending proposal, the fees on businesses and multi-family[iii] accounts would change to a volume-basis, with a three-tiered rate.  This change would affect only business and multi-family accounts—it would not affect single family accounts. This change does not affect the fees charged for solid waste collections services.

The King County Board of Health (Board) sets the Program’s rates and will be considering this proposal at their April meeting. If the proposal is adopted, changes to the rates would become effective January 1, 2015.

Why the proposed change?  The Program is interested in making its rates fairer.  The current system charges all business ratepayers the same, regardless of the volume of solid waste they generate.  The proposed change would reduce costs for entities that generate less solid waste, shifting those costs to entities that generate larger volumes.  The proposal also changes fees for multi-family complexes, making those rates consistent across the County.  Currently, multi-family ratepayers in Seattle pay the local hazardous waste residential rate, while those in other areas of the County pay the business rate.  Under the proposed system, all multi-family ratepayers would pay the business rates, based on the tier system described above.

To learn more about this proposal, visit our website and sign up for our free Webinar on March 6th.

To learn more about Local Hazardous Waste Program services, visit www.lhwmp.org.


[i] RCW 70.105.220

[ii]Businesses include commercial enterprises, not-for-profit organizations, governments, schools, universities, hospitals, and other institutions.

[iii] Multi-family residences include condominiums, apartment buildings, townhouses and multiplexes.

Multi-Agency Collaboration: A Success Story

Elliott Bay from downtown Seattle

Elliott Bay from downtown Seattle

What is a model for successful multi-agency collaboration? According to the Northwest Center for Public Health Practices it is
• a common mission
• consensus-based decision making
• continuous improvement and
• innovative approaches
The Center features the Local Hazardous Waste Management Program in King County who has used these approaches to successfully collect and dispose more than 1.4 tons of hazardous waste in 2011 alone. Read more at

https://www.nwcphp.org/communications/publications/spotlight/multi-agency-collaboration/index.html

Businesses: Prepare for Floods

Even if your business is not in a flood zone, it could still be flooded.  And business owners are liable for any contamination and clean-up caused by their hazardous products or wastes. Where to start?  Reduce the number of chemical products you store and safely dispose of your unwanted hazardous products and wastes.  If your business is in King County, these free services can help with that:

  • Call to schedule a free on-site visit to help you evaluate your business process and the wastes you generate.  206-263-8899 or toll free at 1-800-325-6165, ext. 3-8899
  • Find out if you qualify to dispose of wastes through the Local Hazardous Waste facilities and the Wastemobile
  • Not sure if a product or waste you have is hazardous? Call our Business Waste line at 206-296-3976.
  • Receive 50% or up to $500 of costs to manage, dispose, reduce or recycle hazardous wastes.

More safety tips for Businesses are at our website.  If you have friends who don’t have access to the web and could benefit from printed information, download this flyer for them.

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