of common household products contain toxic ingredients… drain
cleaners, oven cleaners, motor oil, anti-freeze, ammonia, bleach,
paints, paint removers, solvents, and pesticides. Improperly used
or disposed of, these chemicals reach streams, lakes, Puget Sound
and even underground aquifers that provide our drinking water.
It’s up to us to stem the flow of these toxics into our waters
and landfill sites.
down the drain go either into a septic tank or a public sewer
system. In the septic tank, toxics can destroy organisms which
break down wastes and some can pass unchanged into surrounding
soil and water. In the sewer system, toxics can damage treatment
plants or flow directly into Puget Sound. If dumped into storm
drains, toxics often flow directly into streams, lakes, and Puget
products enter our homes, it’s our responsibility to handle, use
and dispose of their hazardous wastes in an environmentally safe
To aid householders
in disposing of their hazardous wastes, special collection days
have been organized in many communities. Some counties have year-round
about collection days or permanent collection sites near you,
call 1-800-RECYCLE. In King County, call the HAZARDS LINE at 296-4692.
If you’re unsure how to dispose of any material found around your
dwelling, phone the Hazardous Substance Information Hotline at
1-800-633-7585 or your county health department.
you’ll find some different categories of products commonly used
at home, the appropriate disposal methods for each, and alternatives
which pose a reduced threat to the environment.