Many of us are preparing for the upcoming winter season by decluttering and organizing our garages, basements, and storage closets. Often we collect, and store items like cleaning products, batteries, lawn fertilizer, oil, varnish, and even nail polish remover. These products have probably accumulated because we aren't always sure how to dispose of them properly. The Environmental Protection Agency reports that the average home can collect as much as 100 pounds of household hazardous waste. They also advise being on the lookout for labels that state: corrosive, toxic, flammable, or Keep Out of Reach of Children, in YOUR home! Additionally, cleaning products, batteries, fertilizer, and oils are just a few items to keep out of the trash.
Often people think pouring hazardous materials down the drain, flushing them, or just putting them in the trash will be okay. It is a dangerous practice that can release toxic fumes into the home! These hazardous materials can end up harming our local environment, especially our water supply. Wastewater treatment facilities cannot break many of these materials down correctly; therefore, harmful chemicals can reach rivers, lakes, and streams. Leaving hazardous materials in the garbage poses a health threat to sanitation workers by breathing in toxic vapors or getting these products on the skin if the chemicals leach out of the trash, children, and pets could even be at risk walking near leaked chemicals and tracking them into the home.
We know our community wants to be proactive in keeping our homes and environment safe. At the Miami County Solid Waste District, we want to help make disposing of hazardous waste as easy as possible. We suggest buying hazardous materials in smaller quantities, when possible, to have less waste. While we may not always be able to avoid using household hazardous materials, with proper disposal, we can minimize the impact on the environment and protect the health and safety of our family and community.
For safe disposal, bring your hazardous household products to the Miami County Transfer Station any Wednesday (June 3 - September 30), from 9 am to 1 pm. The cost is $1 per pound.
Proper handling and transporting of hazardous waste can reduce the possibility of accidental spills.
Do not transport hazardous waste in the same part of your vehicle with your children or pets—place materials in the trunk or the rear of your car. Place a piece of plastic or some protective barrier down before loading materials into your vehicle for easier cleanup in case of a spill.
Some examples of hazardous materials include: