Battery Recycling: Keeping Safety Top of Mind

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Safety education around battery recycling and disposal is needed.

March 15, 2018

The proliferation of technology coupled with growing battery use allows for a number of everyday conveniences. As part of the convenient factor comes the responsibility to safely recycle those products, specifically batteries. Not only is battery recycling good for the planet, it also reduces safety risks and is an easy year-round action. From how batteries are prepared for drop-off through the transport and sorting process, safety is paramount. Training offerings, innovative safety products and awareness campaigns are a great trilogy for success. Equally important – keeping a pulse on best practices and happenings in the marketplace.

Recent fires caused by lithium-based batteries in transport and at HHW and solid-waste facilities reinforce the need for safety education around battery recycling and disposal. It all starts at the source – battery users. Sharing the “hidden dangers” of throwing items like laptops and cellphones in the trash or their individual batteries can help safeguard against potential thermal events at facilities across the country. The key is communication. From consumers to onsite employee protocols, proactive communication on safe battery handling reduces risk.

Another area of opportunity is increased education on the safe handling and transport of batteries that are damaged, defective or are part of a recall. Damaged batteries are considered potentially hazardous to the public and the environment, making it important to keep them out of the trash. Safe handling measures include placing these batteries in non-flammable material like sand or kitty litter until they can be properly handled and safely recycled. There are a few solutions in the market today to handle these types of batteries, including specialty kits from Call2Recycle.

There is a continued need to educate on safe battery recycling, making it important to encourage proactive and responsible handling practices. Doing so protects everyone involved in the process. With Daylight Saving Time and Spring Cleaning around the corner, this is a great time to properly and safely recycle your batteries.

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