ABC of Safety in the Biological Sciences - Chemical Disposal

 

ABC of Safety in the Biological Sciences

 

 


GENERAL GUIDELINES FOR THE DISPOSAL OF LABORATORY CHEMICALS VIA WASTE DISPOSAL AUTHORITIES/COMPANIES

The following guidelines should be observed when disposing of laboratory chemicals in large quantities via waste disposal authorities/companies.
  • Laboratory chemicals requiring disposal should be notified in writing to the appropriate authority or company detailing name, quantity, method of packaging, condition of containers and whether they are sealed or opened. A data sheet containing chemical and technical data for each chemical should also be forwarded to the appropriate authority/company.
  • Chemicals which are classified as explosive should be disposed of in the specified manner according to the appropriate 'Explosives or Dangerous Goods Act'.
  • Acidic waste should be neutralised.
  • Alkaline waste should be neutralised.
  • Oxidising agents should be reduced.
  • Reducing agents should be oxidised.
  • Chemicals which either, react violently with water or, ignite on exposure to air, should be treated to a non reactive state.
  • Gas cylinders should be depressurised, purged and the valves left open.
  • Unknown chemicals should be subjected to the above treatment as necessary and then packed in such a manner that there will be no danger to personnel during transportation and subsequent disposal.
  • Mercury compounds, excepting mercury metal, which can be recycled, should be converted to mercuric chloride and packaged separately.
  • Cyanide compounds must be detoxified and packaged separately.
  • Known carcinogens should be labelled accordingly and packaged separately.
  • The chemicals should be contained in 200 litre drums which are in good condition or, in packages weighing not more than 20 kg's gross, with sufficient inert packaging material, such as vermiculite, to ensure that breakage of individual packages does not occur during transportation.
  • Liquids and solids should not be packed in the same container.
  • Only compatible chemicals are to be packed in the same container.
  • Each container must be labelled indicating the chemicals which are in each container.
  • Containers in which chemicals are packed, which are dangerous goods, are labelled in accordance with the appropriate 'Dangerous Goods Regulations'.
  • Prior to a disposal date being arranged, the authority/company should be notified of the treatment carried out in respect of each chemical. Confirmation that no explosive or radio-active materials are included for disposal and a list of the number and contents of each container, should be supplied.
  • Specific guidelines on disposal of chemicals via the waste disposal authority/company are normally issued upon request.
DISPOSAL PROCEDURES

The disposal procedures are taken from the Laboratory Waste Disposal Manual published by the American Manufacturing Chemists Association. They are intended to assist laboratory personnel in developing an awareness of chemical hazards and to dispose of chemical wastes without personal injury, adulteration of drains and excessive contamination of ground, air or water. It should be stressed that these procedures are intended only for small laboratory quantities. For large amounts the waste disposal authority or local equivalent should be contacted.

Although the information and recommendations presented are believed to be reliable, no warranty, guarantee or representation is made by the author or Ajax Chemicals as to the correctness or sufficiency of any information or recommendations given.

Recommendations made for disposal by sewer, open pit burning, etc. assume that such actions are permitted by the local authority.

CODE 1A - ORGANIC ACID HALIDES
WEAR:
Rubber gloves, self contained breathing apparatus (or work in an effective fume hood with full face shield), and laboratory coat.
SPILLS:
Cover with sodium carbonate. If a small quantity is involved, scoop the mixture into a large beaker of water and let it stand for a few minutes. Slowly discharge to sewer with a large excess of water. If a large quantity is involved, scoop the resulting bicarbonate mixture into a plastic bag, cardboard or small fibre drum. This material can then be burned in an incinerator or spread on the ground and flooded with water. The site of the spill should be washed with soapy water.
PACKAGE LOTS:
Slowly sift or pour into a large glass or plastic vessel containing a layer of sodium carbonate. Mix thoroughly and add slowly to a large container of water, with stirring. Slowly discharge to sewer with a large excess of water.

CODE 1B - INORGANIC HALIDES
WEAR:
Rubber gloves, self contained breathing apparatus (or work in a fume hood), and laboratory coat. For the more active compounds work behind a body shield.
SPILLS:Cover with excess sodium bicarbonate. If a small quantity is involved, scoop the mixture into a large beaker of water and let it stand for a few minutes. Slowly discharge to sewer with a large excess of water. If a large quantity is involved, scoop the resulting bicarbonate mixture into a plastic bag, cardboard or small fibre drum. This material can then be burned in an incinerator or spread on the ground and flooded with water. The site of the spill should be washed with soapy water.
PACKAGE LOTS:
Sift or pour onto a dry layer of sodium carbonate in a large evaporating dish. After mixing thoroughly, spray with 6M ammonium hydroxide while stirring. Cover with a layer of crushed ice and stir. Continue spraying with 6M ammonium hydroxide. When the smoke of ammonium chloride has partly subsided add ice water and stir. Dump this slurry into a large container. Repeat until all has been treated. Neutralise and slowly discharge to sewer with large excess of water. If excess of 6M ammonium hydroxide has been used, neutralise with 6M hydrochloric acid (use litmus paper indicator). If acidic, neutralise with 6M ammonium hydroxide.

CODE 2 - ALDEHYDES
WEAR:
Rubber gloves, self contained breathing apparatus and laboratory coat.
SPILLS:
Eliminate all sources of ignition and flammables.
Small - absorb on a paper towel. Evaporate in fume hood and burn the paper.
Large - cover with sodium bisulphite. Add a small amount of water and mix. Scoop into a large beaker. Discharge to sewer with a large excess of water. Wash the spill site with a soapy solution.
PACKAGE LOTS: (Choice of procedures).
1. Absorb on vermiculite. Burn in an open pit or open incinerator.
2. Dissolve in a flammable solvent (such as acetone or benzene).
Spray into the fire box of an incinerator equipped with an afterburner.

CODE 3 - ALKALI AND ALKALINE EARTH METALS, METAL ALKYLS AND ALKOXIDES
WEAR:
Leather gloves, large face shield and laboratory coat.
SPILLS:
Small - cover with excess soda ash or sodium bicarbonate. Mix and add slowly to butyl alcohol. After 24 hours dilute and discharge to sewer with a large excess of water.
Large - mix with dry soda ash or sodium bicarbonate. Scoop into a dry bucket. in a remote area spread onto a large iron pan. Cover with scrap wood, paper and ignite with a torch or fuse OR burn in an open pit incinerator OR direct dry steam on to the waste spread on a iron pan. Beware of splatter.
WARNING: Beware of possible violent reaction with water.

CODE 4A - CHLOROHYDRINS AND NITROPARAFFINS
WEAR:
Neoprene gloves, plastic laboratory coat and self contained breathing apparatus. Provide good ventilation.
SPILLS:
Eliminate all sources of ignition.
On skin - wash immediately with soap solution. Rinse thoroughly.
On clothing - remove clothing immediately and place in a fume hood. Wash clothing before wearing again. Shoes are difficult to decontaminate and may have to be discarded and burned.
On bench or floor - cover with soda ash. Mix and spray with water. Scoop into a bucket of water. Allow to stand for two hours. Neutralise with 6M hydrochloric acid and discharge to the sewer with a large excess of water. Wash the site with soap solution.
PACKAGE LOTS: Either
1. Pour or sift over soda ash. Mix and wash slowly into a large tank. Neutralise and discharge into sewer with a large excess of water OR
2. Absorb on vermiculite. Mix and shovel into paper boxes. Burn in incinerator with afterburner and scrubber.

CODE 4B - ORGANIC HALOGEN AND RELATED COMPOUNDS
WEAR:
Rubber gloves, self contained breathing apparatus and laboratory coat.
SPILLS:
Eliminate all sources of ignition. Absorb on paper towels or with vermiculite. Place on an iron, glass or plastic dish in a fume hood. Allow to evaporate. burn the paper or vermiculite. Wash the site with a soapy solution.
PACKAGE LOTS: Either
1. Pour on to vermiculite, sodium bicarbonate or sand-soda ash mixture (90/10). If a fluoride is present, add slaked lime to the mixture. Mix and shovel into paper boxes. place in an open incinerator, cover with scrap wood and paper then ignite with a torch or fuse. Stay on the upwind side OR
2. Dissolve in a flammable solvent. Spray into a fire box of an incinerator equipped with an afterburner and scrubber.

CODE 4C - SUBSTITUTED ORGANIC ACIDS
WEAR:
Rubber gloves, self contained breathing apparatus or all purpose canister respirator, and laboratory coat.
SPILLS:
Eliminate all sources of ignition. Turn on the fume hood if the acid is volatile. Cover the spill on bench or floor, with an excess of sodium bicarbonate and vermiculite. Mix and scoop into a large beaker of water. When the reaction is complete discharge to the sewer with a large excess of water. Wash the spill site with soap solution.
PACKAGE LOTS: Either
1. Pour on to an excess of sodium bicarbonate. Mix and scoop into a bucket. Dump into a 200 litre drum and fill with water. After 24 hours slowly discharge to sewer with a large excess of water OR
2. Pour on to vermiculite in an open incinerator. Cover with scrap wood and paper. Pour waste alcohol over all and ignite with a torch or fuse. Stay on the upwind side OR
3. Dissolve in a flammable solvent such as waste alcohol. Spray into an incinerator equipped with an afterburner and scrubber.


CODE 5 - AROMATIC AMINES
WEAR:
Butyl rubber gloves, laboratory coat and self contained breathing apparatus.
SPILLS:
On skin and clothing - wash skin with strong soap solution immediately. Rinse thoroughly. Contaminated clothing should be removed, dried and washed with strong soap solution or destroyed. It may be necessary to destroy shoes by burning.
Small spills - absorb liquid on paper towels. Brush solids on to paper. Place in an iron pan and allow evaporation in a fume hood. Add crumpled paper and burn. Wash spill site with a strong soap solution.
Large spills - cover with sand and soda ash mixture (90/10). Mix and shovel into a cardboard box. Pack with a large excess of crumpled paper. Burn in an open pit or incinerator equipped with an afterburner and scrubber.
PACKAGE LOTS: Either
1. Pour or sift on to a thick layer of sand and soda ash mixture (90/10). Mix, and shovel into a heavy paper box with much paper packaging. Burn in an incinerator. The fire may be augmented with scrap wood. Stay on the upwind side OR
2. Dissolve in a flammable solvent and spray into the firebox of an incinerator equipped with an afterburner and scrubber.

CODE 6 - AROMATIC HALOGENATED AMINES AND NITRO COMPOUNDS
WEAR:
Butyl rubber gloves, laboratory coat, self contained breathing apparatus and protective shoes.
SPILLS:
On skin and clothing - wash skin with a strong soap solution immediately. Rinse well. Contaminated clothing should be removed and cleaned at once or destroyed by burning.
Small spills - absorb liquid on paper towels or vermiculite; sweep solid spills on to paper. Put on an iron pan in a fume hood and allow to evaporate. Burn the paper or vermiculite in the absence of other inflammables. Wash the site thoroughly with a strong soap solution.
Large spills - absorb or mix with vermiculite, sodium bicarbonate or sand. Package this in a paper carton and burn in an open pit. Use wood scraps and crumpled paper to augment burning. Wash the site thoroughly with a strong soap solution.
PACKAGE LOTS: Either
1. Pour or sift on to sodium bicarbonate or a sand, soda ash mixture (90/10). Mix and package in heavy paper cartons with plenty of paper packing to serve as fuel. Burn in an incinerator OR
2. Mix with a flammable solvent and spray into a firebox of an incinerator equipped with an afterburner and scrubber.
NOTE:
Destruction by chemical decomposition is recommended for dinitro, trinitro and other compounds with explosive potential. Add the material, slowly, while stirring, to 30 times its weight of a solution prepared by dissolving 1 part sodium sulphide in 6 parts water. For unstable acidic materials (eg. picric acid) dissolve in 25 times its weight in a solution from 1 part sodium hydroxide and 21 parts sodium sulphide in 200 parts water. Some hydrogen sulphide and ammonia is evolved.

CODE 7A - ALIPHATIC AMINES
WEAR:
Rubber gloves, face shield or all purpose canister respirator and laboratory coat.
SPILLS:
Liquid or solid - cover with sodium bisulphite. Spray with water and discharge to sewer with a large excess of water.
PACKAGE LOTS: Either
1. Add the contaminated amine to a layer of sodium bisulphite in a large evaporating dish. Spray with water. Neutralise and discharge to the sewer with a large excess of water OR
2. Dissolve in a flammable solvent then burn in open pit or in an incinerator equipped with an afterburner and scrubber.

CODE 7B - ORGANIC PHOSPHATES AND RELATED COMPOUNDS
WEAR:
Rubber gloves, self contained breathing apparatus and laboratory coat.
SPILLS:
Absorb with vermiculite or paper towels. Scoop the mixture into a plastic bag then incinerate. If an incinerator is not available, set the bag in a pan of waste flammable solvent and burn.
PACKAGE LOTS: Either
1. Take packages to an open incinerator. Stay on the upwind side and mix with equal parts of sand and pulverised limestone. Wet down with a flammable solvent. ignite from a safe distance with a torch or fuse OR
2. Shovel mixture from procedure 1 into a paper box and drop into an incinerator with an efficient afterburner and alkaline scrubbing will prevent escape of any oxides of phosphorus or arsenic.

CODE 8. - AZIDES AND AZO COMPOUNDS
WEAR:
Leather gloves, heavy face shield and laboratory coat. Work from behind a barricade (body shield or wall). Avoid unnecessary heat, friction or impact.
SPILLS:
Absorb the liquid with paper or vermiculite. If it is a solid, dampen then brush on to paper with great care. Place in a plastic bag and remove outside for burning OR
Sponge up with water, followed by decontamination with 10% ammonium ceric nitrate solution. 'Kill', by adding to a greater stoichiometric amount of ammonium ceric nitrate solution with agitation sufficient to provide suspension of all solids. Cool the reaction. The organic azides and heavy metal azides are explosive. Alkali and alkaline earth azides are not considered explosives under normal laboratory conditions. Keep the stock of azides very low. Stamp the date of receipt upon the package.

CODE 9 - CARBON DISULPHIDE
WEAR:
Rubber gloves, safety glasses and laboratory coat. If a fume hood is not available wear self contained breathing apparatus. A carbon dioxide fire extinguisher should be available.
SPILLS:
Eliminate flammables and all sources of ignition. Allow to evaporate or absorb with paper towels and evaporate in a fume hood on an iron pan or glass dish. Burn the paper.
PACKAGE LOTS:
All equipment or contact surfaces should be grounded to avoid ignition by static charge. Absorb on vermiculite, sand or ashes and cover with water. Transfer under water, in buckets to an open area. Ignite from a distance with a torch or fuse.

CODE 10 - CAUSTIC ALKALI AND AMMONIA
WEAR:
Rubber gloves, large face shield, all purpose or special canister respirator for ammonia and laboratory coat.
SPILLS:
Solid - sweep up, dilute and neutralise with 6M hydrochloric acid, in a large bucket. Discharge to sewer with a large excess of water.
Solution - neutralise and mop up.
PACKAGE LOTS:
Pour into a large tank of water and neutralise. Discharge into sewer with a large excess of water.

CODE 11 - INORGANIC SALTS
WEAR:
Rubber gloves, safety glasses and laboratory coat.
SPILLS:
Solid - collect in a beaker, dissolve in a large amount of water. Add soda ash, mix and neutralise with 6M hydrochloric acid and discharge to sewer with large excess of water.
Solution - cover with soda ash, mix and scoop into a beaker of water. Neutralise with 6M hydrochloric acid and discharge to sewer with a large excess of water. If a spill contains a fluoride, add slaked lime in addition to the above treatment.
PACKAGE LOTS:
Add slowly to a large container of water. Stir in a slight excess of soda ash. If fluoride is present add slaked lime. Let stand for 24 hours. Decant or siphon into another container and neutralise with 6M hydrochloric acid. Discharge to sewer with a large excess of water. The sludge may be added to land fill.

CODE 12A - OXIDISING AGENTS
WEAR:
Rubber gloves, face shield and laboratory coat. A body shield should be available for the more active agents. Replace the face shield with self contained breathing apparatus for such agents as chlorine and bromine.
SPILLS:
1. Gas leak - if the valve is leaking because it cannot be closed, the gas can be bubbled through a reducer (sodium sulphite) and excess sodium bicarbonate solution. Be sure to include a trap in the line to prevent the solution being sucked back into the cylinder. If this cannot be done the cylinder should be placed in or adjacent to a fume hood and left to bleed off. If the leak is in the valve assembly, a plastic bag can be fastened over the head of the cylinder which can then be taken outside or to a fume hood.
2. Liquid or solid - cover with a reducer (sodium thiosulphate, a bisulphite or a ferrous salt not carbon, sulphur or strong reducing agent). Mix well and spray with water. A sulphite or a ferrous salt will require addition of 3M sulphuric acid to promote a rapid reduction. Scoop the slurry into a container of water and neutralise with soda ash. Discharge to sewer with a large excess of water. Wash the site thoroughly with a soap solution containing some reducer.
PACKAGE LOTS:
Add to a large volume of concentrated solution of reducer (sodium thiosulphate, a bisulphite or a ferrous salt and acidify with 3M sulphuric acid). When the reduction is completed add soda ash or dilute hydrochloric acid to neutralise the solution. Discharge to sewer with a large excess of water.

CODE 12 B - REDUCING SUBSTANCES
WEAR:
Rubber gloves, safety glasses and laboratory coat. Work in a fume hood or wear a respirator.
SPILLS:Gas leak - eliminate all sources of ignition. If the valve is leaking because it cannot be closed, the gas can be bubbled through a calcium hypochlorite solution. Be sure to include a trap in the line to prevent the solution being sucked back into the cylinder.
Solid - cover the spill with soda ash or sodium bicarbonate. Mix and spray with water. If effervescent wait until the reaction is complete. Scoop into a large beaker and cautiously add an equal volume of calcium hypochlorite (the reaction may be vigorous). Add more water, stir and allow to stand for one hour. Dilute and neutralise the oxidised solution and discharge to sewer with a large excess of water.
PACKAGE LOTS:
If a gas, bubble into a soda ash solution. if a solid, mix with an equal volume of soda and water to form a slurry, use a large container. In either case add calcium hypochlorite. Add more water if necessary and allow to stand for two hours. Neutralise the oxidised solution then discharge to the sewer with a large excess of water.

CODE 13 - MERCAPTANS AND ORGANIC SULPHIDES
WEAR:
Rubber gloves, self contained breathing apparatus and laboratory coat.
SPILLS:
Eliminate all sources of ignition. Cover with calcium hypochlorite and mix. Scoop into a large beaker. After 12 hours, neutralise using litmus as an indicator. Discharge to the sewer with a large excess of water. Wash the site of the spill with a strong soap solution to which has been added some hypochlorite.
PACKAGE LOTS: Either
1. As for spills OR
2. Dissolve in waste alcohol or other flammable solvent. Burn in an incinerator equipped with an afterburner and scrubber to neutralise the sulphur dioxide.

CODE 14 - CYANIDES AND NITRILES
WEAR:
Long rubber gloves, self contained breathing apparatus and laboratory coat.
SPILLS:
Eliminate all sources of ignition.
1. General treatment.
Absorb the liquid with vermiculite or on paper towel. If a solid sweep on to paper towel. Place on an iron or glass dish in a fume hood. Evaporate and burn the paper.
On skin - immediately wash the affected area with soap and a large amount of water.
2. Hydrocyanic acid leak.
Turn on the fume hood. allow the gas to leak into a container of sodium hydroxide solution while stopping the leak. Add excess calcium hypochlorite to the alkali cyanide. discharge to the sewer with a large excess of water.
3. Cyanides.
Scoop into a large beaker and make alkaline with sodium hydroxide solution. Add to the slurry an excess of ferrous sulphate solution. After one hour discharge to the sewer with a large excess of water.
4. Nitriles.
Add an excess of calcium hypochlorite solution to produce a cyanate. Scoop the slurry into a large beaker. After one hour discharge to the sewer with a large excess of water. Wash the spill site with a soap solution containing some hypochlorite.
PACKAGE LOTS: Either
1. Add with stirring to strong calcium hypochlorite solution. Allow to stand for 24 hours then discharge to the sewer with a large excess of water OR
2. Liquid nitrile can be mixed with a flammable solvent and sprayed into an incinerator equipped with an afterburner and scrubber.

CODE 15 - ETHERS
WEAR:
Rubber gloves, large, heavy face shield (if any doubt also use a body shield) and self contained breathing apparatus.
SPILLS:
Eliminate all sources of ignition. Absorb the spill on a paper towel. Evaporate from an iron pan in a fume hood that is flash proof. Allow time for the vapours to completely escape the hood vents, then burn the paper. If a large spill, absorb using larger quantities of paper or vermiculite. Then proceed as above.
PACKAGE LOTS: Either
1. Pour on the ground in an open area. Allow to evaporate or ignite from a safe distance by means of a long fuse OR
2. Dissolve the waste in a high alcohol (eg. butyl), benzene or petroleum ether then incinerate OR
3. If ether peroxides are present - DO NOT OPEN THE CONTAINER. Explosions have occurred when stoppers were removed or caps turned. Transport the can or bottle to an isolated area (eg. deserted quarry). Each container or bottle should be wrapped in padding material or packed in sawdust. At the site, uncover the containers and arrange a fuse. from a safe distance puncture the container near the bottom with rifle fire. Ignite the fuse. Always observe local regulations.

CODE 16 - HYDRAZINES
WEAR:
Rubber gloves and self contained breathing apparatus. impervious clothing is recommended. A body shield should be available.
SPILLS:
On skin or clothing - immediately wash the affected area and remove contaminated clothing.
Small spills - eliminate all sources of ignition and flammables. Absorb the liquid with vermiculite or paper towel. Scoop the mixture, paper or solids into a plastic bag and take to a pit or incinerator for burning.
Large spills - collect the liquid with an aspirator such as is used for recovering mercury. Empty into a large beaker and neutralise with dilute sulphuric acid. Discharge to the sewer with a large excess of water. Wash the spill site with soap and water.
PACKAGE LOTS: Either
1. Dilute to at least 40% and neutralise with dilute sulphuric acid. Discharge to the sewer with a large excess of water OR
2. Dissolve in a large volume of waste alcohol or other flammable solvent and burn in an open pit. Ignite from a distance with a torch or fuse.

CODE 17 - HYDRIDES
WEAR:
Rubber gloves, fire proof clothing and face shield. Work from behind a body shield. Keep available pulverised dolomite or dry graphite for fire fighting.
SPILLS:
Eliminate all sources of ignition. Scoop spill into a dry plastic bag which has first been purged with inert gas. Remove to the outside for burning. flood the burned residues with water to ensure complete destruction of the hydrides.
PACKAGE LOTS: Either
1. Mix with dry sand to avoid or stop a fire. Scoop into a bucket and remove to an open area. Slowly spray with dry butyl alcohol. Later ad water by fogging until the last of the hydrides is destroyed. Scoop the solid into a large container. Neutralise with 6M hydrochloric acid and allow to settle. Decant and discharge to the sewer with a large excess of water. Send the sand residue to landfill. If the hydride is a gas, dispose of it by controlled burning OR
2. Burn in an iron pan or an open pit.

CODE 18 - HYDROCARBONS, ALCOHOLS, KETONES AND ESTERS
WEAR:
Rubber gloves, face shield and laboratory coat. Have an all purpose canister respirator available.
SPILLS:
A gas leak - keep the concentration of the gas below the explosive mixture range by forced ventilation. Remove the tank to an open area and allow dissipation to the atmosphere. Attempt to cap the valve outlet and return the tank to the supplier.
A liquid - absorb on paper. Evaporate in an iron pan in a flame proof fume hood then burn the paper.
A solid - sweep on to paper and place in an iron pan in a fume hood. Burn the paper and compound.
PACKAGE LOTS:
A gas - pipe the gas into an incinerator or lower into a pit and allow to burn.
A liquid - atomise into an incinerator. Combustion may be improved by mixing with a more flammable solvent.
A solid - make up packages in paper or other flammable material. Burn in the incinerator. Or the solid may be dissolved in a flammable solvent and sprayed into a fire chamber.

CODE 19 - INORGANIC AMIDES AND DERIVATIVES
WEAR:
Rubber gloves, large face shield and laboratory coat. A large body shield should be available.
SPILLS:
Eliminate all sources of ignition. Sweep up the solid amide on to dry paper. Cautiously add to cold water in small amounts with agitation. Neutralise using litmus as an indicator, then discharge to the sewer with a large excess of water.
PACKAGE LOTS:
Sift slowly into a large container of cold water with agitation. When the reaction is complete neutralise using litmus as an indicator then discharge to the sewer with a large excess of water.

CODE 20 - ORGANIC AMIDES
WEAR:
Rubber gloves, safety glasses and a laboratory coat.
SPILLS:
Scoop into a plastic bag or onto a paper towel. remove to the outside, add alcohol and burn in a safe place.
PACKAGE LOTS: Either
1. Add to a flammable solvent, pour into an iron pan in an open pit and ignite from a safe distance OR
2. Add flammable solvent and spray into an incinerator equipped with an afterburner and scrubber.

CODE 21 - INTER-NONMETALLIC COMPOUNDS
WEAR:
Long rubber gloves, safety glasses, self contained breathing apparatus and laboratory coat. Work in an open fume hood from behind a body shield or in an open barricaded area.
SPILLS:
Eliminate all sources of ignition.
Gas leak - allow the gas to flow into a mixed solution of caustic soda and slaked lime. If possible keep in a fume hood until the cylinder is empty.
Liquid or solid - cover with vermiculite, sodium bicarbonate or a mixture of soda ash and slaked lime (50/50). Mix and spray water cautiously from an atomiser. Scoop up and add slowly to a large container of water (if too active continue to spray). When the reaction is complete neutralise using litmus as an indicator then discharge to sewer with a large excess of water. Wash the spill site with a soap solution.
PACKAGE LOTS:
Sprinkle or sift on to a thick layer of mixed dry soda ash and slaked lime (50/50) from behind a body shield. Mix and spray cautiously from an atomiser. Scoop up and sift cautiously into a large volume of water. Neutralise using litmus as an indicator and discharge to sewer with a large excess of water.

CODE 22A - INORGANIC PEROXIDES
WEAR:
Rubber gloves, large face shield and laboratory coat. A body shield should be available.
SPILLS:
Cover with at least double the volume of sand-soda ash mixture (90/10). Mix thoroughly and break up any lumps of peroxide.. with a plastic scoop add slowly to a large beaker of sodium bisulphite solution 93 or 4 litres) with stirring. Neutralise with dilute sulphuric acid. When settled, decant the sulphate solution and discharge to the sewer with a large excess of water. The sand can be used for land fill.
Hydrogen peroxide - spill or packaged lots - dilute and discharge to the sewer with a large excess of water.
PACKAGE LOTS:
Use the above method for the encrusted, impure peroxide. Repackage the recovered pure granular peroxide in glass containers with rubber stoppers.

CODE 22B - ORGANIC PEROXIDES
CAUTION:
Keep your stock low and date each container as received. Never transfer to glass stoppered containers or screw cap bottles which can cause dangerous friction. See code 15 for ether peroxides.
WEAR:
Rubber gloves, large heavy face shield and laboratory coat. Work under a flash proof fume hood and from behind a heavy body shield.
SPILLS:
Eliminate all sources of ignition.
Liquid peroxide - spills may be absorbed in a large quantity of vermiculite or sand. Using a soft, plastic scoop, carefully place the mixture in a plastic container. Spread on a steel pan or in a deep pit. Ignite from a safe distance with a torch or fuse. Wash the scoop and container with 20% sodium hydroxide. Burn the original cartons and bags.
Solid peroxide - spills should be mixed with a large volume of vermiculite or sand. Cautiously transfer to a deep pit and ignite from a safe distance with a torch or fuse.
Small quantity - a very small amount of solid or liquid may be destroyed by adding 10 volumes of 20% sodium hydroxide. after 24 hours, neutralise using litmus paper as an indicator then discharge to the sewer with a large excess of water.
PACKAGE LOTS:
Absorb or mix in small portions of vermiculite or sand. Wet down with 10% sodium hydroxide. Scoop up with plastic scoops and remove to an open incinerator-pit. When dry, ignite from a safe distance with a torch or fuse.

CODE 23 - INORGANIC SULPHIDES
WEAR:
Rubber gloves, safety glasses and laboratory coat. work in a fume hood or wear self contained breathing apparatus.
SPILLS:
Eliminate all sources of ignition then either -
1. Add ferric chloride solution and stir until the reaction is complete. Add slight excess of soda ash. scoop up and discharge to the sewer with a large excess of water. Wash the spill site with soap and water OR
2. Absorb with vermiculite or sodium bicarbonate and scoop into a plastic bag or wide mouthed glass jar. Close tightly then remove to a safe place outside. Add ferric chloride solution and stir until the reaction is complete. Add a slight excess of sodium bicarbonate then discharge to the sewer with a large excess of water.
PACKAGE LOTS:
Add to a large volume of ferric chloride solution with stirring. Add more ferric chloride if necessary. Add soda ash with stirring until the solution is neutral. Scoop up and discharge to the sewer with a large excess of water.
NOTE:
If a gas eg. hydrogen sulphide, seal the cylinder and return to the supplier. If the valve is leaking, the gas can be bubbled through a ferric chloride solution. Be sure to include a trap in the line to prevent the solution being sucked back into the cylinder. If this cannot be done the cylinder should be placed in or adjacent to a fume hood to bleed off.

CODE 24A - ORGANIC ACIDS (Containing C, H and O)
WEAR:
Rubber gloves, face shield and laboratory coat. A body shield and self contained breathing apparatus should be available.
SPILLS:
Eliminate all sources of ignition. Cover the contaminated surface with soda ash or sodium bicarbonate. Mix and add water if necessary. scoop up the slurry, check for neutrality with litmus then discharge to the sewer with a large excess of water. Wash the spill site with soda ash solution.
PACKAGE LOTS: Either
1. Liquid acid may be injected at the base of an incinerator after mixing with a flammable solvent. the incinerator should be equipped with an afterburner and scrubber OR
2. A solid acid may be dissolved in a flammable solvent and burned as above OR
3. A solid acid may be packaged in paper or other flammable material and burned in an incinerator equipped with an afterburner.

CODE 24B -INORGANIC ACIDS
WEAR:
Rubber gloves, laboratory coat and self contained breathing apparatus. have a body shield available.
SPILLS:
Cover the contaminated surface with sodium bicarbonate or soda ash-slaked lime mixture (50/50). Mix, and add water if necessary to form a slurry. scoop up the slurry and discharge to the sewer with a large excess of water.. wash the spill site with a soda ash solution.
PACKAGE LOTS:
Add slowly to a large volume of an agitated solution of soda ash and slaked lime until the solution is neutral. Discharge to the sewer with a large excess of water.

CODE 25 - CARBIDES
WEAR:
Rubber gloves, safety glasses and laboratory coat.
SPILLS:
Cover with dry vermiculite, scoop into a dry bucket or plastic bag and transfer to a safe, open area. Dispose of the material with caution by adding it slowly to a large volume of water. Burn the hydrocarbon gas using a pilot burner. allow to stand for 24 hours and discharge to the sewer with a large excess of water.
PACKAGE LOTS:
Take to a safe, open area and add slowly to a large container of water. Burn off the hydrocarbon gas with a pilot flame. Allow to stand for 24 hours. Siphon off the liquid and transfer the precipitate to a landfill.

CODE 26 - WASTES TO BE DUMPED TO LANDFILLS OR RELEASED TO AIR
WEAR:
Heavy gloves and safety glasses.
DISPOSAL:
The waste may be used as fill in reclaiming low areas or may be dumped in a landfill.

CODE 27A - RECOVERY: SCRAP METAL IN THE FORM OF SHEETS, RODS, WIRE OR TUBES
WEAR:
Heavy gloves, safety glasses and laboratory coat.
DISPOSAL:
1. Larger pieces of less expensive metals can be sold as scrap metal. eg. aluminium, copper and brass.
2. The more expensive metals are worth salvaging even in small pieces. eg. platinum wire and silver foil.
3. Metal should be sorted and placed in boxes, properly labelled. Turnings, shot and cuttings of the cheaper metals may be assigned to a landfill

CODE 27B - MERCURY RECOVERY
CAUTION:
The toxicity of mercury is such that the element and its compounds should not be allowed to contaminate air or water.
WEAR:
Rubber gloves, laboratory coat and self contained breathing apparatus.
SPILLS AND PACKAGE LOTS:
Metals - Collect all droplets and pools immediately using a suction pump and an aspirator bottle, with a long capillary tube. Cover fine droplets in non accessible cracks, with calcium polysulphide and excess sulphur. Combine all contaminated mercury in a tightly stoppered bottle. Hold it for purification or sale.
Compounds - dissolve all water soluble contaminated compounds. Convert other contaminated compounds to the soluble nitrates. Adjust the acidity and precipitate as mercuric sulphide. Wash and dry the precipitate.

CODE 27C - PHOSPHORUS RECOVERY (YELLOW AND RED)
WEAR:
Rubber gloves and large face shield.
YELLOW PHOSPHORUS
SPILLS: Either
1. Cover with wet sand. Spray with water to keep the sand wet. Scoop into a bucket. After standing overnight, recover and repackage OR
2. If the quantity is very small, cover with water and remove to an open area. Pour on to the ground or on to a steel pan. The water will evaporate and dry yellow phosphorus will ignite spontaneously in air and burn away.
DEFECTIVE PACKAGING:
Submerge in a large container of water. Repackage under water.
RED PHOSPHORUS
SPILLS:
Sweep up and burn on an iron pan in a fume hood.
DEFECTIVE PACKAGE:
Repackage and return to the shelf.

CODE 27D - ARSENIC, ANTIMONY AND BISMUTH RECOVERY
WEAR:
Rubber gloves, safety glasses, laboratory coat and respirator (or work in a fume hood).
WASTE:
Dissolve in a minimum of concentrated hydrochloric acid. Filter if necessary. Dilute with water until a white precipitate forms. Add just enough 6M hydrochloric acid to redissolve. Saturate with hydrogen sulphide. Filter, wash and dry the precipitate.

CODE 27E - SELENIUM AND TELLURIUM RECOVERY
WEAR:
Rubber gloves, safety glasses, laboratory coat and a respirator (or work in a fume hood).
SPILLS:
Absorb on paper and place in a wide mouth stoppered bottle for later recovery. Wash the site with a soap solution.
PACKAGE LOTS AND RECOVERED SPILLS:
Liquid or solid - make a solution strongly acidic with hydrochloric acid. Slowly add sodium sulphite to the cold solution with stirring, thus producing sulphur dioxide, the reducer. Upon heating, dark grey selenium or black tellurium forms. Let stand overnight, filter and dry.

CODE 27F - LEAD AND CADMIUM COMPOUNDS RECOVERY
WEAR:
Rubber gloves, safety glasses, laboratory coat and a respirator (or work in a fume hood).
PACKAGE LOTS AND RECOVERED SPILLS:
Convert to nitrates with a minimum of concentrated nitric acid. Evaporate in a fume hood to a thin paste. Add water and saturate with hydrogen sulphide. Filter, wash and dry the precipitate.

CODE 27G - BERYLLIUM COMPOUNDS RECOVERY
WEAR:
Rubber gloves, laboratory coat and self contained breathing apparatus. Wash clothing after each job.
SPILLS:
Absorb on paper towels and place in a large, stoppered, wide mouth bottle. Save for later recovery. Wash the spill site with a soap solution.
PACKAGE LOTS AND RECOVERED SPILLS:
Dissolve in a minimum amount of 6M hydrochloric acid. Filter and treat the filtrate with a slight excess of 6M ammonium hydroxide (use litmus). Boil and allow to settle for about 12 hours. Filter and dry.

CODE 27H - STRONTIUM AND BARIUM COMPOUNDS
WEAR:
Rubber gloves, safety glasses and a laboratory coat.
PACKAGE LOTS AND RECOVERED SPILLS:
Dissolve the waste in 6M hydrochloric acid and filter. Neutralise the filtrate with 6M ammonium hydroxide (use litmus) then precipitate with excess sodium carbonate. Filter, wash and dry the precipitate. If the waste is of a very small volume use code 11.

CODE 27I - VANADIUM COMPOUNDS RECOVERY
WEAR:
Rubber gloves, laboratory coat and large face shield. If the spill is large wear a self contained breathing apparatus.
SPILLS:
Cover with powdered ammonium carbonate. Add a layer of crushed ice and spray with 6M ammonium hydroxide while stirring. Scoop the slurry into a wide mouth bottle and save for salvage. Wash the spill site with a soap solution.
PACKAGE LOTS:
Add slowly to a thick layer of powdered ammonium carbonate in a large evaporating dish. Spray with 6M ammonium hydroxide while stirring. Add a layer of crushed ice and continue stirring and spraying. Add more 6M ammonium hydroxide if necessary. More waste can be added while stirring. Pour into a large beaker and allow to stand overnight. Filter off the crude ammonium vanadate, dry and package.

CODE 27J - HALOGENATED SOLVENTS RECOVERY
WEAR:
Rubber gloves, laboratory coat and self contained breathing apparatus (or work in a fume hood).
SPILLS:
Absorb on paper towels and allow to evaporate in the fume hood. Burn the paper. Wash the spill site with a soap solution.
PACKAGE LOTS:
The toxic liquid compounds concerned here are insoluble in water and cannot be burned. purify the contaminated liquid by distillation and place the purified distillate back on the shelf OR
Disposal of according to any local regulations.

CODE 27K - MISCELLANEOUS RECOVERY
The elements and their compounds should be dealt with separately. Special instructions should be sought from the supplier.

CODE 28 - CELLULOSE NITRATE, COLLODION AND CELLULOID
WEAR:
Rubber gloves, laboratory coat and face shield. outside disposal is preferred but can be done in a fume hood.
SPILLS:
Either - for cellulose nitrate
1. Eliminate all sources of ignition. Gather up the nitrocellulose and dampen with alcohol. Spread out on a thin layer (5cm deep maximum) in an outside open area on top of paper or other combustible material. Ignite from a distance with a long torch. When disposal by burning must be done in a fume hood, the quantity burned at any one time should be limited to 250ml or less. This small quantity can be placed in a shallow, pyrex dish and ignited after it has been dampened with alcohol OR
2. Eliminate all sources of ignition. Gather up the nitrocellulose and dampen with water. Squeeze out the excess water and place the nitrocellulose in a large stainless steel beaker in a large pyrex dish. Add an equal amount of 10% caustic soda (no stronger) to the beaker. Most of the nitrocellulose should be consumed within 20 minutes. Remove the beaker and discharge to the sewer with a large excess of water. (Caution: the beaker will be hot from the heat of the reaction).
SPILLS:
Collodion - Eliminate all sources of ignition. Wipe up the spilled material with paper towel or rag. Remove to an outside open area. Spread on the ground and ignite with a long torch.
PACKAGE LOTS:
Small quantities of collodion (250ml or less) may be disposed of in a fume hood by igniting in a pyrex dish. Larger quantities should be disposed of in an open outside area by pouring into a steel pan and igniting with a long torch. Celluloid disposal should be carried out in an open area. eliminate all sources of ignition. Spread the waste celluloid on top of paper or other combustible material. Ignite from a distance with a long torch.
WARNING: Whenever cellulose nitrate, collodion or celluloid is burned or decomposed, oxides of nitrogen are released. Avoid direct breathing of the vapour.

CODE 29 - DIRECT BURNING
WEAR:
Heavy leather gloves and safety glasses.
DISPOSAL:
Materials should be properly packed for safe handling and placed in a prescribed site for daily collection. Burning can be done in an open or closed incinerator equipped with an afterburner.

 

 

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REFERENCES