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Household Hazardous Waste (HHW) is the unwanted or unusable portion of products that contain substances that can be harmful to human health and the environment.
Look for the words Danger, Warning, or Caution on the product label. “Danger” warnings are found on extremely hazardous products. “Warning” and “Caution” indicate less of a hazard, however, these products should be handled carefully and disposed of with caution. A hazardous product can be toxic, flammable, corrosive, reactive or any combination of these.
A poisonous product which can cause illness. Pesticides, paint thinners, auto products and some cleaners are toxic. Look for warning labels like “Harmful or fatal if swallowed”.
A product which can catch fire spontaneously or burn easily. Paint thinners, solvents, and auto products are the most flammable home products. Look for warning labels like “Do not use near heat or flame”.
A product which can cause a chemical reaction which will eat through materials or living tissue. Oven cleaners, drain cleaners, toilet bowl cleaners and automotive batteries are common corrosive products. Look for warning labels like “Causes severe burns on contact”.
A product which can explode or react violently when subjected to heat, sudden shock, pressure or contact with an incompatible substance. Pool/spa chemicals, fireworks and ammunition are the most explosive or reactive products.
Thomas K. Zoner