Most managers will undoubtedly say, no way!
However, many managers simply do not know what a hazardous waste walk-though actually
is. It’s similar to most men not asking for directions when they are clearly lost. We know where we are going and how to get there. Our ego’s just won’t let us stop and admit we are wrong or need the help. Asking for help by requesting a walk-through is pretty much the same thing. Here are some typical reasons why many managers say no to a walk-through of their facilities:
- They don’t want to be embarrassed if they find out that what they have been doing for years is actually wrong.
- Most people have a natural aversion to someone coming onto their territory and telling them what they should be doing.
- They think it is going to be an audit of their operations.
- Managers don’t want to have to update operational procedure manuals and stay current on the ever-changing regulatory requirements, because it’s a pain.
- Many male's egos won't allow them to ask for help or admit they need help.
Whatever the actual reason, saying no to a walk-through can put your business at serious risk of heavy fines and stopped production time. The DTSC can show up on your door at
any moment without notice and shut you down in the blink of an eye. It’s important for managers to put their egos aside, which admittedly can be a difficult thing to do, and look at what is best for the company. Ultimately, ensuring the company is in full compliance with State and Federal guidelines and operating efficiently will help save the company money and probably your job.
What Do I Get from a Hazardous Waste Walk-Through?
Essentially, you receive an evaluation of your hazardous waste procedures and operations. Everything from waste manifesting and emergency readiness to hazardous waste procedures and storage will be looked at to ensure it meets all State and Federal guidelines.
The process is a collaborative one to ensure your company and employees are protected and in legal compliance with the law. In many cases, we are able to identify outdated procedures that were once legal, but have been changed over the years and are no longer valid. We help determine if your operations and storage requirements are up-to-date and you are using proper labeling procedures. We help save companies money by identifying waste streams that could be combined and look for new and better ways to dispose of your waste more efficiently.
The walk-through is NOT an audit of your operations! We work together to determine what’s right and what needs to be addressed. The benefits of a hazardous waste walk-through far out way many of the objections most managers have.
What Are You Waiting For?
The DTSC, EPA or OSHA will catch you eventually if you are trying to evade the law or are just ignorant of it. The old saying, “Ignorance is bliss,” does not apply here. Ignorance will only get you in deep trouble and put your company at serious risk. Many have tried and failed, like Jose G. Sosa who was fined $243,000 for illegal dumping hazardous waste twice!
If you think you may be violating certain regulations or just want to make sure you are operating correctly and within the law, get a hazardous waste walk-through. Some companies may charge for this service (IDR does not) but it is worth the peace of mind. If you are operating from an operations manual that was printed in the 80’s or 90’s, you probably need a walk-through immediately.