Hazardous products are considered hazardous if they have one or more of the following properties:
- Corrosive - Chemical action can burn and destroy living tissues or other materials when brought in contact.
- Explosive/reactive - Can detonate or explode through exposure to heat, sudden shock, pressure or incompatible substances.
- Flammable/combustible - Can be easily set on fire.
- Toxic - Capable of causing injury or death through ingestion, inhalation or skin absorption. Some toxic substances cause cancer, genetic mutations and fetal harm
General Categories of Hazardous Products
- Brake fluid
- Car wax and cleaners
- Lead-acid batteries
- Motor Oil
- Transmission Fluid
- Windshield wiper fluid
- Paint stripper
- Paint thinner
- Insecticide and insect repellent
- Pet spray and dip flea collars
- Rat and mouse poison
- Weed killer
- Wood preservative
- Drain opener
- Furniture polish and wax
- Oven cleaner
- Spot remover
- Toilet bowl cleaner
- Tub and tile cleaner
- Arts & crafts materials
- Household batteries
- Lighter fluid
- Pool chemicals
- Shoe polish
How to Deal with Hazardous Material during Flood EventThe City urges residents to take precautions to reduce contamination of you or your neighbor's property from hazardous materials.
Homeowners and business owners in areas that are likely to flood should move hazardous materials to a safe area that is likely to remain dry throughout the flooding. Examples of hazardous materials include solvents, paint, paint thinners, pesticides, fertilizers, household cleaners, drain cleaners, antifreeze and other chemicals.
When moving these chemicals to a higher location, take the following safety precautions:
- Keep chemicals in their original containers.
- Make sure they are closed tightly and labeled.
- Do not mix chemicals.
- Place the containers in tubs or trays. You can use a heavy duty plastic bag as a liner.
Preparing Heating Oil and Fuel Oil Tanks for Flooding
Because fuel is lighter than water, floods can wreak havoc with fuel tanks. Above ground tanks and heating oil tanks in basements can become unstable, flip over and lose their contents through vent pipes and other openings. Underground tanks can literally be forced out of the ground by water pressure, spilling fuel as they move.
If you have a heating oil tank in your basement or above ground fuel tanks on your property, secure them as best you can to prevent them from tipping over if they encounter flood water. If possible, contact a bulk fuel dealer to recover the fuel before floodwater reaches it. Empty tanks will be more buoyant and they will not be releasing fuel in your home or on your property.