The Retrofit Companies Blog

Local School Cleans Out Chemical Stockpile

 

Fourth Baptist Christian School

Lab Pack and Chemical Clean Out

 


Take a look at the video below to see how a simple chemical clean out can be very eye-opening!

 

 

  Customer Spotlight, Fourth Baptist Christian School

Chemical Waste Clean Out, Lab Pack Service

 

 

CHEMICAL STOCK PILE IN SCHOOLS

 

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Fourth Baptist Christian School
Plymouth, MN

  

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Fourth Baptist Christian School is 53 years old, and many years ago (possibly 25-30 years) the school accepted a donation from a local university with a full lab of miscellaneous chemicals. After years of storage, the Science Department determined they do longer had a use for most of these chemicals and could better utilize all of that valuable storage space. Alan Hodak, Fourth Baptist School Administrator and Executive Director of the MN Association of Christian Schools, and his team decided it was time to find a safe and responsible way to dispose of this mysterious stockpile. Alan's team decided to reach out to TRC and call in their team of Chemical Waste Experts to assess the situation and help properly remove these potentially dangerous chemicals with their Lab Pack service.

 

"Something had to be done, and the timing was right," - Alan J. Hodak, Administrator at Fourth Baptist Christian School

 Request a recycling pick up

Do You Have Radioactive Materials in Your School?

As TRC's team worked through the stockpile, properly identifying, sorting, packaging, and preparing, they came across some Radioactive material. This is more common than you may think, but can be easily removed with the help of an expert

Radioactive material 1Example of Radioactive Material found in schools

 

Radioactive materials have long been used in schools to demonstrate this fundamental concept.  These materials may be dangerous if not properly handled and stored.  We often find that these materials were purchased long ago, by staff who have since moved on.  As regulations change and new staff arrive, it can be a challenge to keep training and licensing current.

 

Depending on how long your chemicals sit around or how they are being stored, there may be other high risk items that you would never realize unless thoroughly assessed. We often assist schools in similar situations as Fourth Baptist Christian School and in the process discover items that they never even knew they had.

 

Best Practice for SChools with Chemicals


Our TRC Chemical Waste Experts have encountered many schools with similar chemical waste issues, and our recommendations for best practices are as follows:

Chemical Clean Out Lab Pack
Fourth Baptist Christian School Chemical Clean Out - Lab Pack Services
After chemicals have been properly sorted and packaged

  • Only carry inventory of items you will use within your curriculum
  • Keep cabinets organized and labeled
  • Plan an annual inventory and Clean Out
  • Reduce your risk by avoiding mysterious donations

Hazardous Waste Inventory Download

 

Request a recycling pick up
 

Lithium Batteries Are a Fire Hazard


lithium ion battery

 

Is your business in need of a recycling program for lithium batteries? These popular batteries pose dangerous risks and are quickly piling up into hazardous, potentially explosive scenarios in nearly every business you can imagine.

 

Do I have Lithium Batteries?

Lithium batteries have become common in everyday items, powering our computers, cell phones, pace makers, clocks and even our vehicles; it is more likely than not that you have lithium ion batteries in your facility. They have become the new normal, however many are unaware of the risks that they pose and how to properly dispose of them. With such a large volume of these batteries everywhere, it is vitally important that you and your business are aware of how to properly handle lithium batteries.

 

Lithium Ion Batteries (1)Lithium Batteries are Commonly Found In:
 
  • Digital Cameras
  • Clocks
  • Computers
  • Cell Phones
  • Pace Makers
  • Watches
  • Thermometers
  • Laser Pointers
  • MP3 players
  • Calculators
  • Computer backup systems

 

Why are Lithium Batteries Dangerous?

These batteries are more likely to catch fire than other rechargeable batteries due to their chemistry, containing a flammable electrolyte. These batteries are also pressurized and pack more energy into a small space, causing them to be more popular but also more dangerous.

 

If the batteries have a flaw, are damaged, overcharged, packed too closely together or are exposed to high temperatures they can overheat. This can be a very dangerous situation where uncontrolled positive feedback can cause other nearby batteries to overheat, triggering a domino effect of what is known as "thermal runaway." 

 

How do I Properly dispose of them?

To avoid dangerous situations with your lithium batteries, be sure to follow proper disposal guidelines. For full details and up to date information on lithium battery regulations please visit the eCFR - Electronic Code of Federal Regulations. 

 lithium ion batteries

 

TRC can assist with properly disposing of your lithium ion batteries. Please click below to contact one of our team members and they will be happy to answer any questions you may have.

Free Hazardous Waste Consultation

 

Aerosol Can Recycling Process

aerosol-recycling-process.jpg 

Aerosol can disposal has recently undergone some changes in Minnesota and The Retrofit Companies has designed a program for Minnesota businesses to take advantage of these new regulations. Under this program TRC accepts waste aerosols for recycling or disposal on our Universal Waste Bill of Lading. Aerosols may be packaged into any of our UN-rated shipping containers and picked up on our truck with your other universal wastes. No additional paperwork is required.

Aerosols are shipped to our Licensed Universal Waste Collection Facility in Little Canada, MN for additional sorting/processing. Waste aerosols are then shipped to our partner disposal facility where they are fully drained. Finally, the drained liquids and gases are blended into fuel or incinerated and the empty cans are recycled as scrap metal. In essence this process is converting the waste into heat energy.

Under the new regulations, Minnesota businesses will no longer be allowed to depressurize aerosols at their facility unless they fully capture all of the gas and liquid inside. Previously many business owners were using a depressurizing system which only filtered the escaping gases. These gases were then being released into our atmosphere. Under our program all the contents of each aerosol are captured, preventing any release to the atmosphere.

For questions about this process or how to get started with aerosol can recycling, please contact our Haz Team today.

If you are ready for a pick up at your Minnesota business:

Schedule a pick up for your aerosol waste

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