Waste Spill at Your Workplace? You Need an Immediate Intervention
What to Do After a Waste Spill at Your Workplace
Once a waste spill has happened at your workplace, immediate and appropriate action must be taken to avoid contamination, injury, or violations of regulatory standards. Spills of biological, chemical, or radiological waste may be considered hazardous and must be immediately handled for everyone’s safety and to protect the environment.
Be Prepared for a Waste Spill
It is crucial to understand the regulations placed on the specific materials and wastes your workplace handles. These regulations are set by the EPA and OSHA and will inform how you are to safely and adequately handle waste spills at your workplace.
Your workplace must have a clearly defined spill response plan in place when working with hazardous chemicals and wastes. You don’t want to think about a spill response after a spill has already occurred. All employees should know the spill response plan and understand the importance of proper spill protocol.
How to Properly Handle a Waste Spill at the Workplace
Any individuals who are responsible for a spill or the individuals who are the first to identify a spill are responsible for taking immediate action.
You must first identify the spilled substance and the risks associated with the specific type of waste spilled. This identification will dictate how you proceed with handling the waste spill. Individuals should immediately inform their supervisor and alert all area occupants of the spill.
The area should be evacuated immediately if necessitated by the type of waste spilled. Anyone contaminated by the spill must be urgently attended to. They must remove any contaminated clothing, and contaminated skin and eyes should be flushed in a safety shower or emergency eyewash station for at least 15 minutes. Any medical attention needed should be sought promptly.
If volatile or flammable waste is spilled, ventilate the area and control any ignition sources. When handling waste spills, you must wear the appropriate safety gear, including respiratory protection if necessitated by the type of waste spilled.
Confine the spill area as soon as possible. Do not allow any contaminated individuals to spread contamination or let the spill spread on its own. Make sure spills do not enter the environment by blocking drains and any other means of environmental release.
As soon as possible, report the spill to the appropriate emergency response team as outlined by your workplace’s spill response plan. This may include a hazardous waste disposal service to dispose of the waste properly.
Finally, secure the spill area so that no one can enter before the emergency response team has arrived and cleaned the spill. Only qualified personnel should handle waste spill cleanup. Authorized individuals must have the expertise, safety equipment, and cleanup materials required for the specific type of waste spill.
Contact Vision Environmental for Assistance with Waste Spills
For expert advice on creating a comprehensive spill response plan for your workplace and for waste disposal services, contact Vision Environmental today!