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Heritage is proud to announce the launch of its new blog site. We are transitioning from a third-party blog host, to directly placing our blogs in our public website. The content and other resources that the site offers should help to engage visitors and educate them on the various ways in which Heritage conducts itself as a steward of the environment.

One of the biggest improvements to the blog site is the ease with which a visitor is able to navigate throughout the pages. Any user should be able to get anywhere in the site with only a few clicks. You can find our blogs by category, by date, or search for any topic. You will even see suggested similar articles below an opened blog post you are reading.

We are excited to bring our blog over to the Heritage website, and we hope that visitors enjoy the easy navigation throughout. If you subscribe to the blog, you will be notified by e-mail when a new blog is released. We also want to hear from YOU! Just use our web chat or contact us form to suggest blog topics that interest you. Submit a suggestion and watch for your topic to be featured on our blog site!

We first distributed this blog in November of 2014, but it has continued to be helpful and useful and wanted to share it with you again! Hazardous waste generators are under constant scrutiny to avoid violating regulations set by RCRA as well as national and state government. In order to help you avoid any potential violations we have developed the following list of 10 steps. If you manage your waste with these ten things in mind you should be able to maintain a safe and compliant workplace.

1. Remember to mark storage containers with an accumulation date.

Containers of hazardous waste in a 90 or 180-day storage area must be marked with an accumulation date. Check that yours are each week during your inspection of the storage area. You could also consider using a log or spreadsheet to track wastes in addition to review of dates during your area inspections.

2.  Make sure used oil containers are properly labeled.

Remember, “Used oil is defined as any oil that was refined from crude oil or any synthetic oil, and that is used and as a result of such use is contaminated by physical or chemical impurities.” Any container holding used oil must be marked “Used Oil.” Additionally, pipes used to transfer used oil to a UST must be marked “Used Oil.”

3.  Ensure that your containers are kept closed.

Except in the instances of adding or removing waste containers should always remain closed. This means closing and latching funnels, screwing in bungs, using drum rings, and tightening bolts. Remember, if the contents would spill if the container was overturned, then the container is considered open.

4. Keep tabs on your universal wastes.

Make sure you understand the regulations for universal wastes (things like batteries and used lamps). Properly label the wastes as “Universal Waste Batteries” and “Universal Waste Lamps.” Check your local state regulations as well.

5. Label all containers in your storage areas.

Containers in a 90 or 180-day storage area must be marked with the words “Hazardous Waste” as well as listing: generator name and address, accumulation start date, contents, physical state, and hazardous properties.

6. Have a contingency plan in place.

Whether you’re a small quantity or large quantity generator, you must have a contingency plan in place. You can help make sure you avoid violations by designating an emergency coordinator, keeping information up to date and on-site, ensuring all required elements are included in your plan, and for LQG’s, document submittals to local authorities.

7. Have a hazardous waste reduction plan on-site.

A hazardous waste reduction plan (often referred to as a waste minimization plan) is required for all hazardous waste generators. To keep yourself compliant make sure you keep a copy on-site, update that copy annually to ensure accuracy, make sure it’s signed by management, and ensure all applicable elements are included.

8. Properly label waste in satellite accumulation areas.

Utilizing satellite accumulation areas can be very beneficial to hazardous waste generators but it is imperative that all requirements listed in 40CFR are followed. Keep yourself violation free by reviewing and understanding the definition of a satellite accumulation area and by labeling your container once the first drop of hazardous waste is added.

9. Perform weekly inspections of hazardous waste storage areas.

Ensure consistency in your inspections by designating one day a week to perform them. Remember that Monday’s and Friday’s are not typically the best choices since they are often spent catching up from the weekend or readying for the weekend respectively. Have a back-up inspector and make sure that all inspections are documented in an inspection log.

10. Always make a hazardous waste determination.

You must make a hazardous waste determination for all wastes generated on your site. You should also make a list of each kind of hazardous waste generated. Determine if any exemptions apply to your wastes and figure out if your wastes are listed or characteristic hazardous wastes. Treat any unknown waste as hazardous until a determination has been made. Document everything and hold on to the documentation.  

What Is Industrial Maintenance?

Industrial Maintenance is a combination of regular housekeeping, preventative, episodic, and emergency cleaning of equipment and work areas in a manufacturing or other industrial setting. Maintenance personnel are typically responsible for making sure your equipment is functioning properly and efficiently at all times. By keeping equipment properly running, you improve the safe work environment for all personnel. Even though you have Maintenance personnel onsite, at times you may need outside help. For example, once waste will be generated by a maintenance project, it may be time to bring in an Industrial Maintenance Contractor.

 

What Do Industrial Maintenance Teams Do?
Depending on the company you use, many different tasks can be done. Usually, specialty industrial maintenance includes performing duties in hazardous or unsafe conditions. It may make sense to look for a contractor with specialty safety equipment and even specialized machinery. One thing that an industrial maintenance contractor may be trained to take care of is emergency spill response. In a situation where there may have been an accident, causing waste or other materials to spill, having a safety plan and contractor arrangements in advance are key. A cleanup team will first assess the situation and make sure to stop any further damage from occurring. Another very important job you can have completed is tank cleaning. When a tank has waste or materials in them, they will need to be cleaned periodically in order to comply with OSHA standards. An Industrial cleaner will wash, scrub and sanitize your tanks to ensure they can be used safely moving forward. The cleaning team may also do hydro-blasting, which is a technique that allows them to use high-pressure water to clean hazardous and non-hazardous material from machinery.

 

Why Is Industrial Cleaning Important?
When your equipment and machinery is clean, it is safer and more efficient. Chemical storage tanks hold all types of materials from acids, caustic, petroleum, food, pharmaceuticals, and even paint. They require cleaning for various reasons including housekeeping, mechanical problems, mixer failure, new chemistry, as well as for inspection. Typically, whenever this time comes around, sludge has accumulated inside the tank and must be removed, by regularly cleaning and inspecting, you can cut down on time spent for unscheduled maintenance and repairs. It will also keep your equipment properly working by reducing wear and tear. Not only does industrial cleaning help your machines, but it helps your personnel. By keeping equipment clean and performing at its best, it will create a safer work environment for your employees who are working with that equipment.

 

How Can Heritage Help?
When it comes to industrial maintenance, cleaning, and waste removal, trust is not just valued. It is required. You can trust the world class reliability that Heritage always offers to show up every time you need. You can trust our safety records, with employees that are rigorously trained and retrained several times per year. Heritage industrial maintenance field crews perform this work daily across the country. Our crews have the right knowledge and training to safely enter, remove any remaining material, and clean your tanks and equipment to whatever level is required. In case you are wondering what kind of services our industrial team can handle, here are some examples!

  • -Vacuum services-DOT spec high velocity vacuum trucks
  • -Hydro-excavation
  • -Confined space entry/rescue
  • -Hazardous/non-hazardous chemical removal
  • -Pressure washing
  • -Hydro-blasting
  • -CO2 ice blasting
  • -Soda blasting
  • -Pit, pond & lagoon clean out
  • -Tank cleaning
  • -Paint booth cleaning
  • -Building decontamination & decommissioning
  • -Onsite dewatering
  • -Emergency spill response, (USCG OPA/OSRO contractor)
  • -Container rental

If there are other services you may be looking for, don’t worry! Heritage is able to handle anything you throw at us! Contact us today and we will work towards a plan that can take care of your cleaning needs, large or small.

The Clean Air Regulation for Hazardous Waste Incinerators:

While it makes good sense for people and industry to reduce, reuse or recycle waste, there will always be residuals, byproducts and spent materials that must be disposed of in compliance with the nation’s hazardous waste disposal rules and requirements. Whether landfill or incineration, disposal facilities must follow a demanding array of regulations to ensure that the waste is managed properly. The regulation for managing air emissions from an incinerator is our focus here.

Various industries producing everything from acrylics to wool fiberglass products are subject to industry-specific regulations of the federal Clean Air Act. These are called the Maximum Achievable Control Technology standards, known simply as MACT. Hazardous waste incineration is one of the industries subject to MACT because the process, like others under the MACT rules, emits substances identified by the U.S. EPA as hazardous air pollutants, or HAPs. Among the 187 HAPs, some of the more familiar ones are: benzene, dioxin, toluene and metals such as cadmium, mercury and lead compounds.

MACT standards for controlling HAP emissions from an industry group, such as hazardous waste incineration, are based on performance of the top 12 percent of that industry group’s facilities that are operating currently. In other words, the minimum standard for hazardous waste incinerators is based on the results of the top performers in the industry. That is how the “Maximum Achievable” part of the rule came about.

“Control Technology” refers to the technology, processes, techniques and work practices that are employed to reduce and control emissions of HAPs. Examples include limits on feed rates, pressures, temperatures and the flow rate of a material as it passes from combustion through the emissions-control system.

The U.S. EPA began work on the rule in the late 1990’s. It was made final in 2005 following input from the public, the various industry sectors, academia and government.

Once set, facilities began conducting required Compliance Performance Tests, or CPTs, to demonstrate compliance. These restrictive tests stress how the facility performs while incinerating larger-than-usual amounts of waste.

For example, MACT requires incinerators to demonstrate 99.99″ destruction of hazardous compounds contained in the waste. An incinerator would not be permitted to operate if it could not demonstrate this level of destruction removal efficiency during the rigors of the CPT.

To demonstrate ongoing compliance, incinerators must conduct these comprehensive tests, which take up to a week to complete, every five years. They must also conduct a specific test every 2.5 years to demonstrate compliance with the MACT limit for emissions of dioxin. A facility’s permit limits will be adjusted accordingly following analysis of the test results.

Visit Hazardous Waste Combustor MACT for more information about this important rule.

In honor of our first HAZWOPER training for the year this past week, we want to take this opportunity to reshare a popular article we originally posted in January of 2016. Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to protect the body against contact with known or anticipated chemical hazards has been divided into four levels. These levels have been established and agreed upon by the US EPA, US Coast Guard, OSHA, DOT, NIOSH, and other agencies.

Level A

Level A protection must be used when the highest level of skin, eye, and respiratory protection is required based on measured levels or potential for high concentrations of atmospheres, vapors, gases or particulates, or when a high potential for skin contact with harmful materials exists. Level A equipment includes:

  • Pressure-demand (positive pressure) full-face self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA) or airline respirator with escape SCBA;
  • Totally encapsulating vapor tight chemical-protective suit;
  • Hard hat;
  • Gloves – outer and inner, chemical resistant;
  • Boots – chemical resistant, steel toe, and shank; and
  • Two-way radio (worn inside suit).

Level B

Level B protection must be used when the highest level of respiratory protection is required (as in Level A), but a lesser degree of skin protection is required. Level B equipment includes:

  • Pressure-demand (positive pressure) full-face SCBA or airline respirator with escape SCBA;
  • Hooded, chemical resistant clothing, such as one or two piece splash suit or disposable chemical resistant coveralls;
  • Gloves – outer and inner, chemical resistant;
  • Boots – chemical resistant, steel toe, and shank;
  • Hard hat; and
  • Two-way radio (worn inside suit).

Level C

Level C protection must be worn when airborne contaminants are known and the criteria for using air purifying respiratory is met. Level C equipment includes:

  • Full-face or half-mask air purifying respirators with cartridges approved for the type of exposures likely to be encountered;
  • Hooded, chemical resistant clothing, such as overalls, and long-sleeved jacket, one or two piece splash suit or disposable, chemical resistant coverage;
  • Gloves – outer and inner, chemical resistant;
  • Boots – chemical resistant, steel toe, and shank;
  • Hard hat; and
  • Two-way radio.

Level D

Level D is the basic work uniform that should be used whenever necessary. It provides only minimal protection. Level D equipment, used as appropriate, includes:

  • Boots – chemical resistant, steel toe and shank;
  • Gloves;
  • Safety glasses; and
  • Hard hat.

Additional PPE

If you work in a position that poses other or additional risks it may be beneficial to use added PPE such as a face shield (if you are working near sparking activity), noise canceling earmuffs if you are working around loud equipment, a dust mask if you will be around non-hazardous flying particulates, and a reflective safety vest to help ensure you are always seen.

Today and every day, talk about your facility safety culture and how to promote the use of PPE at all times to protect the safety and health of yourself and your co-workers.

Easy to Use, Complete Technical Waste Disposal Service

Whether you work in a lab, research facility, or are a small generator, you may have small chemical containers needing disposed. Accumulating different chemicals can be overwhelming because there can be uncertainty about how to dispose of each chemical, hazardous or non-hazardous. Using a lab pack service gives you the peace of mind that all your hazardous and non-hazardous chemicals are being handled properly.

What is Lab Packing?
During a lab pack, qualified professionals will begin by assessing the customers needs. An inventory will be taken, and the contents of each container be determined; even unidentified chemicals. When all chemicals are identified, the lab pack team will pack compatible chemicals from small containers into a larger DOT (Department of Transportation) approved container. The lab pack process ensures the safe handling of chemicals to be taken for proper removal.

How Do You Choose the Right Company?
What are some things you should look for when choosing a company to take care of your chemicals? First you need to ensure EPA compliance. Being compliant to all rules and regulations set by the EPA makes sure that you are working with a company that is properly handling or disposing chemicals. Another important aspect is that a lab pack service crew are properly trained. Having appropriately trained professionals is important because you want to make sure each team member knows what each chemical does, and what chemicals are dangerous if they were to come into contact with each other. There are also benefits if you choose a company who does in house disposal. By using a company who does the lab pack and disposal, you are eliminating the middle man. You are trusting one company and don’t have to worry about improper disposal done by a separate company. When you use one trusted company, you can know that every step is handled by the same team with the same goals.

How Heritage Can Help
If you want to make sure you are following all the regulations set by the EPA, Heritage can help. Here’s how it works:

  1. Our highly trained personnel will meet you on-site to handle all your waste materials. They will help you identify any unknown materials to ensure you everything is being handled appropriately.
  2. We supply all materials and labels needed to ensure regulatory compliance.
  3. We haul everything away for you.

We give you better visibility because you will know exactly what you are dealing with and exactly where it is going. We make it easy! We can save time because all you have to do is make the call to us and we do the rest. Contact us today to get started on your lab pack!

Eliminating the Waste Sent to Landfills Every Day

Amid sustainability discussions, the topic of a circular economy and even a “zero waste economy” occur frequently. Yet business waste is still transported into this country’s more than two thousand active landfills daily. Have you ever stopped to ponder ways to reduce what we throw away – personally or in your business? Is there a way that we can change our habits to minimize the trash sent to landfills? Industry leaders in environmental sustainability know that there are many options to reduce, reuse, and recycle the things we simply throw in the trash and to send Zero Waste to Landfills.

Benefits of Zero Waste to Landfill

You may ask yourself, “How would it benefit my business to eliminate or reduce waste sent to landfills?” By reducing waste and increasing recycling, the benefits to the environment and your company’s financial statements will probably outweigh the costs. First off, it could save your business money. Reduced waste and increased recycling can mean reduced disposal costs and increased revenues. A second benefit is meeting customer expectations for responsible manufacturing and improved life cycle assessments. Another benefit is that the process of reviewing your waste creation may identify ways to improve your manufacturing process. These efficiencies could be conserving human or supply resources, and conserving energy. Your business will be seen by investors, customers and competitors as industry leaders in environmental responsibility.

Steps to Become Zero Landfill

  1. Select a waste management team. These individuals will look over your current situation, determine your goals and develop an implementation plan. The right team should be committed to the goal of sending zero facility waste to a landfill. This can be an internal team or include help from an outside organization.
  2. Assess the current waste management and disposal methods of your company. By conducting a waste audit, you will receive an in-depth analysis of the company’s waste generation/management and disposal covering a certain period of time.
  3. Develop waste reduction and elimination strategies. After setting your goals, implement a plan to achieve short and longer term steps. Strategies can include looking at landfill alternatives like converting waste to energy (e.g. converting waste to fuels via certain incinerators or other outlets) or reusing resources through a recycling center or specialty outlets. To reduce your carbon footprint, you may need to look at your packaging and even consider the redesign of process flow and equipment.
  4. Engage employees. To reach zero waste to landfill, you need the help and cooperation of your employees. Raising awareness and providing training to your employees ensures that everyone is on the same page.

How Heritage Can Help

Every business generates waste and much of that waste can be considered by-products that still have value. By reducing, reusing, or recycling those byproducts, your company can save money or even create a new revenue stream. Heritage works with companies to attain their sustainable goals by building customized programs to reduce waste generation, improve recycling rates, and achieve Zero Waste to Landfill. Having a diverse industrial and commercial expertise, Heritage has the ability to adapt to changing environmental standards and definitions. Heritage embraces broad goals so when one goal is achieved, they can begin the process of reaching the next. We have a world class research and development team that has shown significant success in finding ways to turn waste into new products. Heritage takes pride in being a preferred partner in the process and helping 175 sites to achieve zero landfill status. Are you ready to take that next step to bettering your business and the environment? Contact Heritage today to get started.

A Cost-Effective Way of Shipping Freight

Do you feel there is a better way to ship your freight to another location more efficiently? By using Less than Load Shipping (LTL) you have the opportunity to transport without needing the full trailer. LTL shipping allows you and other shippers to share a trailer in order to fill up the full truck space together. 

What is LTL Shipping?

LTL shipping is a shipping method used when you do not have enough to fill a full-size trailer. This means that one trailer is used to transport smaller loads from multiple shippers at once. With the space being shared, this method is more cost effective for shippers who do not need a full-size trailer.

What Started LTL Shipping?

LTL shipping all started when a regulation called the Motor Carrier Act passed in 1935. With this regulation in action, it limited the number of hours each truck driver could be on the road. Thirteen years later, in 1948, congress authorized carriers to fix their prices and still be exempt from any anti-trust legislation. Throughout the 70’s there were multiple acts that deregulated the industry and helped reduced the price fixing. In addition to this, it brought down collective vendor pricing as well. In 1980 the final stage of deregulation was the Motor Carrier Act of 1980. With this new act in place, it drove prices down and created competition. Between 1980 and 1990, the number of carriers doubled.

Why LTL Shipping?

LTL shipping provides many benefits in comparison to standard full trailer trucking. When a shipper does not have enough product to fill up a trailer, the driver can pick up products from multiple places and haul it all at once. This is going to drop prices for the shippers because they are splitting the cost with all others who are also sharing space on the truck. Since there are multiple loads on a single truck, this is a more eco-friendly way to transport. By using one truck for multiple loads, the amount of trucks on the road is reduced, which cuts down the amount of carbon released into the air. LTL shipping also increases the security of the product on the truck. By decreasing the number of units within the truck and less handling, it is going to cause less damage and product loss. In addition to a more secure transport, LTL is going to offer a larger selection of service options and extra services. This may include, liftgates, non-commercial shipping, notification options, and inside pickup and delivery. With LTL shipping the shipments are usually tracked by: PO number, pick up date, and shipment reference number.

Is It Right For You?

If you are looking for a better alternative for your freight when you do not have the volume to fill a full trailer, and something that is a more eco-friendly, cost-effective and convenient way to ship, LTL shipping may be the right process for you. Heritage is able to offer less-than-truckload pickups based on a 50-route, nationwide network that runs every three to six weeks, assuring regulatory compliance for waste generators, no matter where you are. Heritage has streamlined these routes, combining road, rail, and receiving centers across the country to efficiently, reliably, and best of all, affordably arrange for waste pickup. Getting added to our already established route network is easy and can offer big cost savings. Contact us today to see how often we can pick up at your location and how much money we can save you.

Are You Working Safely?

Do you feel as if you are conducting safe workplace techniques? Do you think you could be doing things to make your work environment safer? By taking extra precautions, we have the ability to take initiative and make work safe. It is our responsibility to act safely whether it be at work, home or on the road. With winter quickly approaching, and in some places already having set up camp, we need to consider winter safety. 

Safety at Work

Winter causes many problems, especially when it comes to slipping. Slips and trips happen throughout all four seasons, but winter poses more of a threat because of the falling temperatures. From a company standpoint, we need to make sure we provide a work environment where our employees can perform their job safely and efficiently. Removing snow from all areas helps keep our employees from slipping or falling. Clearing parking lots, sidewalks and all other walkways makes sure your employees have a clear path to go to and from the building or site. Along with snow, we need to make sure there is not an overabundance of ice that is built up in any area. Any spots that are icy should be salted to ensure it melts and is not causing anyone to slip. When an ice patch is identified, there should be a caution sign placed at the time salt is put down. This is going to warn employees to watch their step and to proceed cautiously.

Employer Responsibilities

It is our responsibility as an employer to provide a safe workplace. By examining work environment conditions, we are staying involved. By being involved we are going to personally know that everything is how it should be and is safe for the employees working in the area. If an accident were to happen we need to make sure we keep records or all work-related injuries and illnesses. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were a little over 2 million nonfatal work-related injuries in 2016 alone. If we take the time as employers and employees to have a safe work environment, we can reduce the numbers of work related injuries.

Employee Responsibilities

Whether we work inside or outside there are winter safety steps we need to take in order to avoid injuries. Those of us who work outside need to become aware of our surroundings constantly throughout the day. If there are any spots that look slick, we need to take note, so we can avoid any accidents. Again, putting up caution signs and eliminating slick spots can reduce accidents. Working outside, we need to take care of our personal health as well. With temperatures that can reach into the negatives, we need to protect ourselves from frostbite and hypothermia. Add an extra layer to keep warm, cover your face to keep cold air from entering your lungs, causing respiratory issues. Even if we work inside we still need to take steps to be safe. When you are coming in and out of your facility, check your surroundings. Be sure to avoid any slick areas and report them to your building manager if there are any.

Are You Prepared?

Now you have some things to think about when making your work environment a safer place. We have the ability to take those extra steps, so let’s get out there and keep ourselves and others safe.

Just What Is “Proper Disposal?”

A family watches a TV news story about a traffic accident involving a chemical spill. The reporter closes by explaining that hazmat crews cleaned up the spill and sent the material off for proper disposal.

A homeowner packs the trunk of her car with boxes of old paint cans, pool and yard chemicals, plus cleaners and solvents that she no longer wants. She drives to a household hazardous waste collection event sponsored by her community. She is satisfied that her old household chemical products have been collected for proper disposal.

A high school chemistry teacher gets ready for another school year by cleaning out and organizing the chemicals in the school’s laboratory. He sends an email to the principal that the lab’s inventory is stored safely, and that the old and unwanted chemicals were shipped out for proper disposal.

For many, the story about proper disposal of hazardous waste ends there.

Without question, our modern society has increased living standards and lengthened life spans. It grows and thrives based on a dynamic economy that produces many goods and services. The production and use of many common, everyday products leave chemical residues that may harm health and the environment if they are not managed properly. That description, essentially, is the definition of a hazardous waste. It takes a specialized industry to manage these materials in an environmentally responsible manner.

For decades, chemical wastes were stored haphazardly, buried, dumped, or burned indiscriminately because they were in the way. Well-known examples of mismanaged hazardous waste, led to the abandonment of a suburban neighborhood in Love Canal, New York, and an oil fire on the Cuyahoga River in Cleveland, Ohio.

Things began to change following the passage of landmark federal legislation in 1976. The Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, known as RCRA, committed the nation to identifying hazardous wastes and developing a program to manage them in a responsible manner. RCRA mandates the proper types of treatment for each type of hazardous waste. This treatment might be chemical neutralization, physical separation of the hazardous chemicals, or possibly thermal treatment to destroy the hazardous compounds. EPA dictates the types of treatment by waste type, thus ensuring proper disposal.

Despite the efforts and policy mandates for people and industry to reduce, reuse or recycle waste, there will always be a chemical residue that must be disposed of in a permitted landfill or be treated by high-temperature incineration with strict controls for air emissions.

So the next time you see a news story about an environmental cleanup, participate in a community household hazardous waste collection, or perform an experiment in a school chemistry lab, think about what “proper disposal” means. You can rest assured there are companies like Heritage that have the experience and know-how to protect health and the environment from the hazards of hazardous wastes.

Watch for future blogs about various waste and treatment types and how the environmental industry helps to assure proper disposal.