Salvage and recycling facilities often store scrap items and materials outdoors on a temporary or permanent basis. This can include vehicles, equipment, appliances, electronics, scrap metal, and recyclables such as cans, bottles, glass, plastic, cardboard and paper. Stormwater runoff from these sites can contain oil and gasoline, heavy metals, suspended solids, and other toxic chemicals. Unsecured scrap and recyclable materials can also be carried away by stormwater runoff, creating the potential for blockage in stormwater drainage systems and trash in downstream waterways. By implementing the following practices and procedures at your salvage or recycling facility, you can help be part of the solution to stormwater pollution.
What can YOU do?
- Remove all fluids from incoming vehicles, equipment, appliances, and other salvage items. This includes:
- Motor Oil and Lubricants
- Antifreeze, Coolants and Refrigerants
- Brake and Transmission Fluids
- Other Liquid Chemicals and Wastes
- Segregate all waste fluids, and store and dispose–or recycle–these fluids properly.
- Fluid removal should be done in a designated area that has a hard impervious surface that is covered by a roof or tarp.
- Drip pans should be used during fluid removal operations and placed under potential leaks. Use dry absorbents, such as absorbent granules, socks and pads to clean up spills or leaking fluids.
- Remove batteries from vehicles, equipment and electronics, and store using an enclosed container. Properly recycle or dispose of the batteries. Use neutralizing agents such as baking soda for lead-acid batteries in case of battery breaks or leaks.
- Remove any other contaminated or hazardous items or materials from vehicles, equipment, appliances and other salvage items. Store and dispose, or recycle, these items properly. These items and materials can include:
- Airbag Cartridges
- Oil Filters
- Brake Pads and Shoes
- Fluorescent Bulbs
- Mercury Switches
- Other Contaminated or Hazardous Items and Materials
- All scrap metal, vehicles, appliances, equipment and materials that may contaminate stormwater runoff should be covered with permanent or semi-permanent covers to prevent contact with rain.
- Dikes, berms, containment trenches, culverts, and surface grading should be used to divert runoff from storage areas.
- Cover or enclose stockpiles or bins of paper, cardboard, glass, plastic and any other material that has the potential to contaminate stormwater runoff.
- Conduct all vehicle and equipment crushing operations in a bermed, impervious area.
- If transporting salvage, scrap or recyclable items, an impermeable liner should be placed in the vehicle, as well as spill cleanup materials, to capture and clean up any spilled or leached fluids or contaminants.