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Dangerous waste basics

Dangerous waste is a complex topic. These tools and resources are a good place to get started.

What is dangerous waste?

Most businesses in Washington generate some type of dangerous waste — waste that’s potentially harmful to health and the environment. You are responsible for handling and disposing of your waste properly.

Learn about specific types of dangerous waste, and how to manage them safely.

In state regulations, Washington uses the term "dangerous waste," while federal law uses the term "hazardous waste." Washington's Dangerous Waste Regulations are based on the federal Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA). Dangerous waste includes more wastes than the federal definition because Washington's rules are more protective than federal rules.

Videos

​Unable to access YouTube? Request a free DVD copy of any of our videos.

Designate Your Waste - Is It Dangerous? (watch all three parts, or select one below)

Part 1: Get Ready to Designate
Part 2: Assign Correct Waste Codes
Part 3: Review and Wrap Up

Businesses must determine whether their waste is dangerous. These videos explain the waste designation and handling process step-by-step.

Dangerous Waste Basics - A Guide for Small Quantity Generators

Many Washington businesses generate small amounts of dangerous waste. Even small amounts can be harmful. Learn whether your business is a small quantity generator and know the requirements. 

Dangerous Waste Containers: An Open and Shut Case 

Dangerous waste containers must be kept closed except when adding or removing waste. Open containers are one of the most common violations our inspectors come across. Watch this video to learn more.

Publications

Guide for Dangerous Waste Generators in Washington
Use this quick reference to find out what dangerous waste rules apply to each generator status (small, medium, or large quantity generator). If you’re unsure which category you’re in, learn about generator status.

Shoptalk: Dangerous Waste & Pollution Prevention Newsletter 
Keep up with new training options, reporting due dates, pollution prevention tips, rulemaking, and more. Subscribe to get email updates. Read back issues for topics you missed.

Dangerous Waste Regulations
It's helpful to have a copy of the regulations on hand to look up specific dangerous waste topics. Follow the link above to either view this publication as a PDF or request a printed copy. You can also view the regulations on the Legislature's website.

How to Develop a Personnel Training Plan
Employee training is essential to worker safety and accident prevention.

Shop Guide for Dangerous Waste Management
This guide covers how to properly manage several common types of dangerous waste. Keep your employees, community, and environment safe by following these practices.

Guía para Talleres Manejo de Desechos Peligrosos
Spanish language version of the Shop Guide for Dangerous Waste Management.

Posters

Inspect Your Dangerous Waste Drums

This poster provides quick reminders for employees doing routine inspections of dangerous waste containers. Post this near your dangerous waste accumulation area.
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Debe Inspeccionar los Contenedores de Desechos Peligrosos

This Spanish language poster provides quick reminders for employees doing routine inspections of dangerous waste containers. Post this near your dangerous waste accumulation area.
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Plain text version
Check Your Dangerous Waste Accumulation Area

Post these guidelines near your dangerous waste accumulation area. This helps employees verify that all necessary equipment and signs are there.
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Managing Dangerous Laboratory Waste

If your facility has a laboratory, it's a good idea to post these safety, labeling, and storage reminders where lab workers will see them. 
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Label Dangerous Laboratory Waste - It's The Law!

Dangerous laboratory waste should be labeled according to specific requirements. Inadequate labeling is one of the most common violations our inspectors come across. Post these guidelines where dangerous laboratory waste is generated.
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Common Environmental Reports for Facilities in Washington State

Knowing which environmental reports your facility needs to submit, and when, can be a challenge — especially if you're a new employee. This two-sided mini poster (8.5 x 11 in) provides a brief overview of the most common reports, their due dates, and where to find more information.

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