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Waste Disposal in Laboratory
February 12, 2024

Laboratories typically perform experiments and research that produce hazardous waste. Testing laboratories, forensic labs, and even college and school laboratories can all generate harmful waste materials during their work. There is a significant concern about how to safely handle laboratory waste disposal. Environmental Marketing Service has the solution for your facility to safely handle your laboratory waste disposal to eliminate risk to human health and damage to the environment.

There are specific procedures to follow when handling laboratory waste to prevent and eliminate the transmission of disease and other harmful elements. Environmental Marketing Services understands the conditions needed and implements highly effective management techniques to properly handle biologically contaminated waste to ensure human health and the environment are protected.

Laboratory Waste Disposal Through Turnkey Lab Pack Service

Environmental Marketing Service furnishes a turnkey lab pack service that is tailored to your facility’s needs. Lab packing of hazardous laboratory waste disposal involves placing laboratory waste into smaller containers which are then packed inside a large 55-gallon drum.

Industries and laboratories that produce hazardous chemical waste find lab packing to be a convenient and cost-effective method when disposing of their hazardous waste off-site. Environmental Marketing Service can help your laboratory facility dispose of your waste through turnkey lab services to ensure it is marked, packed, and disposed of under all federal and state guidelines.

Turnkey lab pack service consists of consolidating chemicals and other substances and ensuring they are prepared in the best and safest possible method to be transported for disposal. Depending on your laboratory waste disposal needs will determine the type of lab pack used. Some lab packs can be recycled, and others can be incinerated or placed in a landfill after being treated, neutralized, or stabilized.

Requirements for Turnkey Lab Pack Service and Laboratory Waste Disposal

Hazardous waste transporters are required to follow several regulations under RCRA guidelines in Title 40 of the Code of Federal Regulations part 263. Generators transporting hazardous materials are required to obtain an EPA ID number, and the DOT requires placarding, labeling, and cover marking all containers.  Environmental Marketing Service will assist your facility with this and all other paperwork required to ensure compliance.

Laboratory waste is required to be packaged in ‘performance packaging’ methods. This packaging method includes inner containers being cushioned with materials that have absorbent qualities. The outside packaging has to be manufactured, designed, and tested as a safe containment for hazardous material classes. Performance packaging is often referred to as ‘lab packing.’

Segregating Laboratory Waste into Appropriate Classes

Environmental Marketing Service can assist your facility with segregating your laboratory waste into appropriate classes according to:

  • Toxicity
  • Flammability
  • Corrosivity
  • Reactivity

Even chemicals considered benign can become potentially hazardous under specific conditions. For this reason, laboratory waste disposal requires segregating the materials into appropriate hazard classes.

DOT Specifications When Packing Laboratory Waste

The DOT definition of hazardous waste is any material or substance that is capable of posing unreasonable dangers to property or health while being transported. DOT specifications require these five considerations:

  • Protect
  • Promote
  • Provide
  • Position
  • Present

The DOT also requires correct labeling and consideration of any environmental impacts your laboratory waste could have. Environmental Marketing Service has the expertise to help your facility comply with all these specifications.

Transporting Laboratory Waste to Designated Facility

A hazardous waste ID number is required by the DOT before you treat, store, dispose, or transport your laboratory waste materials for disposal. Environmental Marketing Service will help your facility obtain this ID number and ensure your laboratory waste is ready for transport to a designated facility under all DOT and EPA specifications.

Laboratory and Chemical Waste Transported in Turnkey Lab Pack

Through turnkey lab pack service, your facility can dispose of large quantities safely under federal guidelines. These guidelines consist of different hazard classes. These hazardous waste materials can become quite dangerous during the process and should be done by or overseen by a trained individual. Environmental Marketing Service has the professionals your facility needs to ensure safe and proper handling during the turnkey lab pack process.

Preparing laboratory waste for lab packs must be done following DOT hazmat shipping regulations and the EPA lab pack treatment standards. Materials need to be grouped in the container and marked with the correct shipping names, such as ‘Waste Flammable Liquids’ or ‘Not Otherwise Specified.’

Forensic laboratories, testing laboratories as well as college and some school labs generate a lot of hazardous materials. These materials range from body fluids, and human tissue to hazardous chemicals and sharp objects. The turnkey lab pack process will allow your facility to safely dispose of large quantities of your laboratory waste.

Some of the common laboratory waste placed in turnkey lab packs include:

  • Organic peroxides
  • Paints, paint thinners, inks, dyes, and varnish strippers
  • DEA substances
  • Unlabeled or unknown containers
  • Mixed waste
  • Solvents
  • Pyrophoric or explosive materials
  • Toxic, flammable or corrosive materials
  • Bases, reagents, and acids
  • Compressed gasses and aerosols
  • Cleaning and disinfecting chemicals
  • Radioactive materials
  • Reactive materials from metals

Material Safety Data Sheets (SDS) are documents listing health and safety data on certain chemicals typically used in laboratories. These data sheets will provide information including:

  • All associated environmental and health risks
  • Properties of the chemical
  • Safety measures needed when storing and transporting the chemical
  • Protocols necessary for lab technicians to take when handling the chemical

These data sheets will help your facility to know which chemicals require expert handling and disposal methods. If you are unsure or have any questions regarding laboratory waste disposal, talk to the experts at Environmental Marketing Service.

Laboratory waste commonly included in disposal methods by Environmental Marketing Service are:

  • Oxidizers
    • Oxidizers are a substance or chemical that oxidizes another substance. These materials have to be disposed of separately from other waste materials that are easy to burn, such as gasoline or wood. Environmental Marketing Service works with the required outlets necessary to handle these dangerous waste materials. 
  • Animal specimens in formalin or formaldehyde
    • Animal specimens contained in formaldehyde or formalin need to be removed from the solution. The liquid solution needs to be poured off and placed into a separate container from the specimen. The liquid solution is then handled separately as a hazardous material. The solution (formaldehyde or formalin) has to be neutralized before it can be disposed of in a landfill.
  • Lab reagents
    • Lab reagents are substances or compounds that are capable of creating a reaction. Lab reagents are used in a variety of laboratory tests. Some of these tests include COVID-19 test kits, blood glucose measures, Nessler’s Reagent and more. Lab reagents have to be disposed of through hazardous waste management services such as those through Environmental Marketing Service.
  • Mercury compounds or devices containing mercury
    • If a device containing mercury is placed in regular trash, the mercury will never disappear. Mercury from this device will find its way into the surrounding environment. Devices containing mercury and mercury itself have to be managed as hazardous waste. Environmental Marketing Service properly handles the disposal of mercury compounds and devices such as thermometers and barometers.
  • Peroxide forming substances
    • There are some chemicals that react with oxygen and create ‘peroxides.’ Peroxides can explode with impact, from heat, or with friction. Peroxide-forming substances require stabilization and disposal through a hazardous chemical waste program. The professionals at Environmental Marketing Service are ready to help your facility prepare, store, and dispose of these hazardous materials properly and safely.
  • Compressed gasses and aerosols
    • An aerosol can should be disposed of through hazardous waste management unless it is completely empty. If there is any solution remaining in the container, it will require safety measures in the disposal process. These measures include being punctured and drained. Compressed gasses and aerosol containers can cause harmful effects to the environment when not properly disposed of. 
  • Solvents
    • A typical example of a solvent is a liquid such as acetone, methanol, or ethanol. Solvents are materials that are able to form a solution or dissolve a given solute. These materials cannot be poured down a drain and require strict hazardous waste management through Environmental Marketing Service.

Expert Laboratory Waste Disposal Service

Environmental Marketing Service provides more than ninety combined years of experience in the hazardous waste disposal industry. Our expert technicians understand the complex procedures required to properly and safely dispose of laboratory waste materials. Contact us today and learn how we can help your facility create cost-effective and innovative solutions to all your disposal and recycling needs. Our services are offered nationwide excluding Hawaii, Alaska, and New Jersey.

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