Disposing of hazardous household items improperly can spark potentially dangerous fires.

Disposing of hazardous household items improperly can spark potentially dangerous fires.

Prevent fires: Keep household hazardous waste OUT of the landfill!

Batteries, electronics and pool chemicals can all spark serious fires

For many families, a spring and summer spent close to home has offered the chance to do some long-awaited clean-up around the home and yard. From those old hot tub chemicals to used batteries, this is a great time to clear out your space – if you do it safely.

While properly recycling these and other household hazardous waste items is as simple as bringing them to Hartland Landfill, too often people simply toss them in the garbage, where they can create serious problems.

“What you put in the garbage matters,” says Russ Smith, senior manager of the Capital Regional District’s environmental resource management team. “When you dispose of hazardous household items improperly it can spark potentially dangerous fires.”

In fact, despite landfill material bans and strong, safety-focused operational practices, this year has brought even more fires than usual to the landfill – fires that wouldn’t happen if materials were disposed of properly.

While most fires are quickly contained by staff, there’s always potential for a fire to grow to an unmanageable level, especially in the dry summer and early fall, before winter rains arrive.

Mind your batteries, chemicals and electronics!

In the Capital Region, about half of these landfill fires are caused by batteries, especially lithium ion batteries found in consumer electronics. The remaining half are caused by household hazardous waste, particularly hot tub and pool chemicals.

The great news? All of these items can properly disposed of in the recycling area, and for free! Simply drop off the items in their designated sections at Hartland or look for another drop-off site near you. And if you’re not sure what the material is, simply bring it to the Hartland public drop-off where staff have experience identifying safely dealing with the materials.

  1. Household batteries – These contain heavy metals like lead, cadmium, zinc, manganese and lithium that can be re-used if they’re recycled properly. Collect your batteries and drop them off for free at one of more than 50 convenient locations across the region that collect these items for recycling – visit Call2Recycle.ca to find the location nearest you.
  2. Household electronics – The electronics that contain most of these batteries are also easily recyclable – both at the Hartland Landfill’s recycling depot and at various other community sites.
  3. Hot tub and pool chemicals – The only safe place for pool chemicals is in your pool or hot tub. Old, unused or expired chemicals can be dropped off six days a week at Hartland Landfill for FREE, keeping them out of the landfill and away from potential fire sources. For more information on this free disposal program, visit crd.bc.ca/hhw.

To learn where you can drop off these items and many others, visit www.myrecyclopedia.ca.

Green LivingRecyclingwaste disposal

Just Posted

A fire destroyed a commercial building on Idlemore Road early Tuesday. The fire is under investigation. (Kenn Mount photo)
UPDATE: Early morning fire destroys new Sooke distillery

Firefighters still investigating cause of Island Shiners Distillery blaze early Tuesday

Oak Bay Police Department briefs for May 3 to 9. (Black Press Media file photo)
Copper wire stolen after Oak Bay construction site targeted twice by thieves

Cop briefs include pair of impounded cars, swiped back medication

Langford Fire Rescue (Black Press Media file photo)
Langford looks to strike out on its own for emergency fire dispatch services

Mayor Stew Young says the city is large enough to negotiate solo

Sidney Lions Club is currently selling 50/50 raffle tickets for a virtual fundraiser to send kids and adults with disabilities to Easter Seals Camps like the one at Camp Shawnigan. (Easter Seals/Submitted)
Sidney service club raises funds for people with disabilities to have some summer fun

Raffle helps fund in-person and online summer camps for adults and children

Sean Hart, 34, unexpectedly left the Seven Oaks Tertiary Mental Health Facility in Saanich on Nov. 6, 2020 and has now been missing for six months. (Photo courtesy Penny Hart)
Search continues for Saanich man Sean Hart six months after his disappearance

Support from community, police keeps his mother hopeful

A bullet hole is seen in the windshield of an RCMP vehicle approximately 4 km from Vancouver International Airport after a one person was killed during a shooting outside the international departures terminal at the airport, in Richmond, B.C., Sunday, May 9, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Homicide team IDs man in fatal YVR shooting as police grapple with spate of gang violence

Man, 20, charged in separate fatal shooting Burnaby over the weekend

The majority of city council votes in favour of this design for a new Salmon Arm flag on Monday, May 10, 2021. (City of Salmon Arm image)
Time for a change: Salmon Arm’s ‘corporate’ city flag is on the way out

Two councillors raise concerns about logo being too corporate for a flag

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau receives his COVID-19 AstraZeneca vaccination in Ottawa, Friday, April 23, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
75% of Canadians need 1st vaccine dose to have more normal summer: Trudeau

The country is on track to hit a major milestone on the road to COVID-19 herd immunity Tuesday, with 40% vaccinated with a 1st dose

A black bear, dubbed Huckleberry by Deep Cove, B.C., residents died on July 31, 2020, after becoming conditioned to food and humans. (North Shore Black Bear Society photo)
Fewer dead bears, more fines: Advocates call for B.C. conservation officer reform

B.C. Bear Alliance wants to see body cameras on conservation officers after more than 600 black bears were killed this past year

Condemned building of the Twin Gables Motel in Crofton is not safe and yet a teen has been climbing around on the roof while others were ripping the siding off the building. (Photo submitted)
Destructive behaviour by teens wreaking havoc on Island community

Crofton residents becoming fed up with the constant vandalism and fires

Minister of Health Patty Hajdu responds to a question during question period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Drug users were shut out of Vancouver’s decriminalization proposal, critics say, demanding redo

The coalition is asking the city to raise the proposed drug thresholds from a 3-day supply

David and Julie Kaplan with their children Estelle and Justin. (Special to The News)
COVID-19 border closure stops B.C. family’s cross-country move

Maple Ridge couple, two kids, turned away at New Brunswick border

Kelowna RCMP precinct. (Michael Rodriguez - Capital News)
Kelowna RCMP reviewing rough arrest after video shared on social media

The video shows an officer punching a man while arresting him for allegedly driving a stolen car

B.C. Labour Minister Harry Bains in the B.C. legislature, May 13, 2019. (Hansard TV)
B.C. to provide three days of sick pay for COVID-19 absences

Province will support employers on cost, labour minister says

Most Read