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Keep Dangerous Waste Containers Closed

Graphic: Graphic showing a properly labeled drum.
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Containers with dangerous waste must be closed, except when adding or removing waste. This is key for safety. Well-kept shops have latched drum rings, closed bungs, locked and latched funnels securely screwed into the containers, if they are used at all.

However, open containers are one of the most common violations that inspectors find in facilities that generate dangerous waste. Mismanaged shops may leave drums open, allowing fumes to escape into the area and risking spills. These shops may receive citations when inspectors come to call.

Containers must be closed. Closed means shut tightly enough that contents cannot spill if tipped over and that chemical vapors cannot escape into the air. Also make sure that:

  • Lids are on.
  • Rings are latched.
  • Bungs are tight.
  • Funnels, if used, are closed and latched.
  • Containers and lids are compatible with the waste.
Photo: Close up of a securely bolted drum ring.

If you handle dangerous waste, it’s your job to keep dangerous waste containers closed.


Related information


Use Proper Containers and Manage Them Correctly is a detailed publication about container management, part of a published step-by-step guide to managing waste.

Accumulating dangerous waste on-site addresses containers in WAC 173-303-200(b)(i) and container management at WAC 173-303-200(b)(i), (d) of the Dangerous Waste Rules.

"Dangerous Waste Containers: An Open and Shut Case"