At NEDT, we’re proud to accept most kinds of residential hazardous waste at our collection centers. But that doesn’t mean we accept them all. Certain types of unsafe hazardous waste shouldn’t be transported to us and we can’t accept them. For some of these, we can point you to other facilities and programs that can help; for others, you’re going to need to call in specialists that can deal with these hazardous products in place—for your own safety.
Unsafe Hazardous Waste We Can’t Accept
While we have a long list of things we can accept, there are some things we can’t. If you’re unsure about materials you have at home, give us a call or use MassDEP’s online Hazardous Household Product Search first. Below are common types of unsafe hazardous waste and what to do with them.
- Explosives: Ammunition, explosive chemicals, shock-sensitive materials, and certain products like flares are all considered explosive. Contact your municipal police department through their administrative phone number (not 911) for your best disposal options.
- Reactive Chemicals: Chemicals that undergo sudden state changes when under shock, pressure, or changing temperatures, OR those that react to water, won’t be accepted because they can cause damage or release toxic gas. The same goes for unidentified compressed gas cylinders. Learn about your options with MassDEP’s Toxics & Chemicals Laws & Rules
- Asbestos: Because of the health risk, proper disposal is required. Asbestos should be handled only by an asbestos abatement contractor licensed by the Massachusetts Department of Labor Standards. They keep a full list of them here.
- Radioactive Materials: Radioactive materials shouldn’t be handled by you or a residential hazardous waste company. To learn more about radioactive materials and how they are handled in Massachusetts, visit MassDEP’s Radioactive Materials
- Medical Waste: This includes used sharps, live culture dishes, and anything contaminated with blood. Such waste is not accepted at NEDT or other collection centers and can’t be thrown in the trash. Most medical products have special disposal options included in the packaging and your town may have a sharps disposal drop-off
If you’ve had a spill of a dangerous chemical or oil, or have observed one, you should contact MassDEP’s Emergency Response.
Dealing with Commercial Hazardous Waste
If you have a business, you also can’t use residential hazardous waste programs or transport the hazardous waste yourself. Not only does your business generate hazardous waste that’s unacceptable at household hazardous waste facilities, but it’s also a matter of scale. This is one of the biggest differences between commercial and residential hazardous waste. If you produce a smaller amount, you may meet Massachusetts’s Small Quality Generators (VSQG) program requirements.
NEDT is on standby if you have any questions or need help disposing of hazardous waste. For our commercial hazardous waste services like transportation, remediation, and disposal, contact us on our commercial website to learn more. For residential services, you can stop by one of our NEDT Household Hazardous Waste Collection Centers. If you want to use our pick-up service, contact us here or call us at 1 (866) 769-1621.