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EPA Cautions Residents About Household Hazardous Waste in Areas Impacted by Floods

Release Date: 07/05/2006
Contact Information: Ben Barry, (212) 637-3651 or

(New York, NY) After the recent flooding in New York, many residents have begun to clean their homes and remove items that are no longer usable. As a part of this process, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, along with the New York Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC), is urging residents to take care when disposing of household hazardous waste (HHW) including paints, cleaners, stains and varnishes, car batteries, motor oil and pesticides.

Local disposal sites are currently being set up throughout flood-impacted areas. Containers should be clearly marked and leaking containers placed into plastic bags to prevent accidental spills. Items that are not appropriate for drop off at disposal sites include: animal manure and carcasses, human waste and other biological items, needles and spoiled food.

EPA cautions anyone who will potentially come into contact with household hazardous chemicals for even a short time. Keep children and pets away from leaking or spilled household chemicals. It is not safe to combine household chemicals from leaking or damaged containers or to burn them. Do not dump the chemicals down the drain, storm sewer or toilet. Mark containers and set them aside until they can be properly disposed. Leave damaged or unlabeled chemicals containers undisturbed, if possible.

The NYSDEC and EPA have established several temporary HHW collection sites in Montgomery, Otsego, and Delaware Counties that are open to the public and will begin collecting designated household hazardous wastes as part of the flooding cleanup effort. In Broome and Tioga Counties, EPA will be conducting curb-side pickup of household hazardous waste. In coming days, NYSDEC and EPA will continue to determine if other possible sites in other impacted counties are necessary for the collection of household hazardous wastes.

Montgomery County:
Fort Plain Fire Dept., Willett Street: Petroleum and HHW
Fultonville Dept. of Public Works: Petroleum and HHW
Canajoharie Dept. of Public Works: Petroleum and HHW
St. Johnsville Marina, Bridge Street: Petroleum and HHW

Otsego County:
Oneonta Dept. of Public Works: Petroleum
Round House Road, Oneonta: HHW

Delaware County:
Hancock Central School Bus Garage: Petroleum
Deposit Dept. of Public Works: Petroleum and HHW

Broome and Tioga County:
Residents are asked to place all HHW curb-side for pickup, separate from other wastes.

Individuals with flood related household hazardous waste questions can call
1-800-462-6553 between 8:30 a.m. - 4:45 p.m. and use the after-hours answering machine to find a nearby disposal site or to determine if there will be a hazardous waste pickup scheduled for the area.

More information about household hazardous waste:
More information on disaster debris: