Medical facilities, labs, pharmacies, and other healthcare providers use chemical-based and hazardous products stored in designated plastic or glass containers. Environmental laws strictly regulate how these empty chemical containers should be disposed of. However, it’s not enough to rinse them out or remove chemical smells from plastic containers.
The residue left in empty chemical containers can be dangerous if not disposed of properly. Using warm water and dish soap will not be enough. For example, if personnel don’t treat containers before disposal, chemicals could mix with groundwater and cause harm to humans and wildlife.
Preventing adverse outcomes starts with knowing how to manage chemicals carefully and making all efforts to reduce chemical waste production by you, your company, institution, or household. Reusing or recycling chemicals and containers should be prioritized if possible, followed by proper disposal if not—cleaning chemicals out of plastic containers is essential.