Take the time to properly dispose of hazardous waste

Johnson City Press • Apr 7, 2014 at 9:03 AM

There are things found in many homes that should never be dumped in a landfill. As we’ve noted in this space many times before, these are seemingly harmless items, such as paint cans, car batteries and even old computer monitors, but they could spell problems for the environment in years to come.Today, residents in Washington County will have an opportunity to properly dispose of hazardous household waste such as automotive fluids, lawn and garden products, medicine and pool chemicals. A hazardous waste collection will be held at Daniel Boone High School from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. to help you safely rid your home of these items.The Environmental Protection Agency said Americans generate 1.6 million tons of household hazardous waste per year. The average home can accumulate as much as 100 pounds of household hazardous waste in the basement or garage. These items include cleaning fluids, pesticides, batteries and automotive fluids.Those are among the items that will accepted today at Daniel Boone High School. Other acceptable items include driveway sealants, roofing tar and compact fluorescent bulbs. Items that will not be accepted include explosives, medical waste and any items from a school, commercial business or agricultural business.Go to http://bit.ly/1ilin9O to see a complete list of acceptable and unacceptable items. Simply pouring these household wastes down the drain or on the ground, or putting them out with the trash can endanger the health and safety of sanitation workers. They also can contaminate septic tanks or wastewater treatment systems if poured down drains or toilets, not to mention create a safety hazard to children and pets if left unattended around the house.That’s why it is important for area residents to take advantage of collection programs like today’s event at Daniel Boone to dispose of these materials. Spring cleaning should be conducted with Mother Nature in mind.

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