Hazardous Waste: Understanding the Danger

Types of Hazardous Waste

Hazardous waste is classified as waste that can be dangerous or harmful to our health and/or the environment. As a business owner, you must be aware if you are producing hazardous waste and if so, you must store, contain, and dispose of it in the correct and legal manner, and register your business as a hazardous waste producer.

Types of hazardous waste can include:

  • Solvents
  • Batteries
  • Oils
  • Asbestos
  • Chemicals e.g. cleaning liquids, brake fluid
  • Pesticides
  • Fridges/ Freezers

Hazardous Waste Dangers

By its very nature, hazardous waste presents a danger to the environment, or to people in the nearby vicinity if it is not handled correctly. Inhalation, ingestion, or dermal exposure to hazardous materials can cause significant harm to humans, animals and plants, whilst the environment can and has been damaged by improper disposal. Hazardous waste presents a serious danger if:

  • It’s released into the air, water, or land and can contaminate the surrounding environment
  • A large amount is released at one time, or if small amounts are released frequently at the same location
  • It comes into contact with humans via skin contact, ingestion, or breathing in hazardous materials
  • Improper storage or disposal leading to spills and leaks which can lead to fires

How to manage the risks of hazardous waste

If you are the owner or director of a commercial business that produces hazardous waste, it is your legal obligation to correctly and safely dispose of your waste. You must assess the risk from any harmful substances produced, and take the necessary steps to ensure employees and the environment are not exposed in a harmful manner to the materials.

Hazardous materials must also be stored in the appropriate manner when awaiting disposal. For example, hazardous fluids must be stored upright, with lids screwed on, and stored in a locked, ventilated cabinet.

Disposing of hazardous waste

To dispose of your commercial business’s hazardous waste correctly, you must use an authorised business to collect, recycle, and dispose of the waste. Our dedicated hazardous waste disposal services at Brown Recycling provide the experience, training, and equipment to safely organise the responsible disposal of your hazardous items.

We also provide waste containment, packaging, and documentation before removing your waste to ensure our process is in line with all regulations. To discuss arranging a hazardous waste disposal service for your business, simply contact us today and we’ll be happy to find the right solution for your needs.


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