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  • Jodi Eberhardt

Dispose of Household Hazardous Waste Properly

Many of the products that we use at home contain substances that are hazardous.

Paints, cleaners, garden chemicals, automotive products and aerosol cans are all examples

of products you may have around the home that are hazardous. When these products

are no longer useful, they become household hazardous waste (HHW). Household

hazardous waste not only threatens the health and safety of our families and ourselves,

it can also cause damage to the air we breathe and fish and wildlife in our waters.

Products are considered hazardous when they have at least one of the following properties

and words on the label:

• Flammable: The label may say “Combustible,” “Inflammable,” “Petroleum

Distillates,” etc. These products could easily catch on fire.

• Toxic: “Poisonous,” “Harmful or fatal if swallowed,” etc. These products may cause

immediate harm or cause long term health problems, such as cancer.

• Corrosive: “Acid,” “Lye,” “Alkali,” etc. These products can eat through skin or other

materials, such as metal.

• Reactive: “Do not mix with other chemicals.” These products can react with other

chemicals, possibly releasing toxic or flammable gases, igniting, or even exploding.

Before buying or using a potentially hazardous product, read the entire label, buy the

least hazardous product you can, purchase only the quantity you need to avoid storing,

and follow the use directions carefully. Store those products you do use in a safe place,

away from heat, flames, cold temperatures, and in dry areas. Store in original containers.

Crow Wing County offers a Hazardous Waste Disposal service.

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