Special Hazardous Wastes

Specific Waste Stream Disposal Information

Ethidium Bromide (PDF)

Compressed Gases 

Disposal of compressed gas cylinders can be very costly. Whenever possible gas cylinders should be returned to the manufacturer. Gas cylinders should always be assumed to be at least partially full. Lecture bottle valves are notorious for clogging with small particles of rust. Gas cylinders must be clearly labeled with their original labels and be in good condition in order to be disposed of through conventional means. Full or partial aerosol cans should be disposed of through the hazardous waste program. Aerosols cannot be sent to the landfill unless they are at atmospheric pressure (empty).  

Biological Waste Disposal

In accordance with the University of Manitoba Biosafety Guide, only sterilized biomedical waste will be accepted by the hazardous waste program.  The waste containers must have an indicator affixed to confirm that the waste was autoclaved or otherwise sterilized.

Biomedical Waste Sharps include needles and any other material that may cause a puncture wound. All needles must be in approved puncture proof autoclave containers. Glass and other sharps may be collected in an autoclave container or alternately in a plastic 20 litre pail with a secure lid.

Non-sharp biological waste must be autoclaved prior to disposal in the regular trash. Any biohazard symbols must be completely removed and the container overpacked into a secondary container such as a black garbage bag or cardboard box.

Infected animal parts and tissues must be incinerated. Uninfected animal parts and tissues are permitted at the Brady landfill but should not be disposed of through caretaking staff. Departments wishing to dispose of carcasses and tissues to landfill will need to make their own arrangements to get them there. The hazardous waste program does not transport animal parts or tissues. Central Animal Care has developed a manual for the disposal of their animal wastes and carcasses. For additional information refer to S.O.P.# F3, F11 and F13.

Potentially Unstable Chemical Waste

Potentially unstable chemicals are those that are or may be shock sensitive. They consist mainly of peroxidizable compounds such as old ethers that have surpassed their storage time limits. Some other compounds such as picric acid can be highly shock sensitive when allowed to dehydrate. Only minimal amounts of these items should be ordered so as to facilitate their management.

Potentially unstable waste disposal is dangerous, costly and requires an enormous amount of preplanning. Different levels of government, as well as local emergency organizations are normally involved with this type of disposal.

The cost for the disposal of potential unstable waste may be billed back to the department where they originated. All peroxide forming chemicals should be disposed within one year of receipt OR within six months of being opened - whichever comes first. This allows the hazardous waste program to dispose of these materials as "regular" hazardous waste through conventional means.

Unknown Chemical Waste

The production of unknown waste should be minimal in a properly managed laboratory. Disposal of an unknown is very time consuming because the identification requires the container to be opened, sampled and an analysis performed. This also raises numerous safety concerns relating to the stability and reactivity of the contents.

The hazardous waste program does not have the resources required to identify unknowns. Unless the contents can be identified from an initial analysis, the costs associated to have outside contractors identify and dispose of unknowns will be passed on to the department of origin.

Unknowns put the University out of compliance with WHMIS regulations. Procedures for the labeling of containers of chemicals may be found in the Controlled Products Standard. WHMIS Labels may be obtained from the Environmental Health and Safety Office by calling 474-6633.