Hazardous waste is a popular topic here on Fixation on Histology. We’ve had posts covering the difference between hazardous waste and biohazardous waste, as well as a post on the categories of hazardous waste. Today we are going to talk about the difference between satellite accumulation areas and central accumulation areas.
Central accumulation areas are what you would generally think of when you think of storing hazardous waste. Central accumulation areas are subject to EPA regulations for Small Quantity Generators and Large Quantity Generators. Small Quantity Generators generate more than 100 kilograms, but less than 1,000 kilograms of hazardous waste per month and may accumulate the waste for 180 days. Large Quantity Generators generate more than 1,000 kilograms of hazardous waste per month and can only store it for 90 days. The owner or operator of these sites are required under EPA guideline 265.174 to do weekly inspections for leaking containers or deterioration of the containers.
Satellite accumulation areas on the other hand, allow generators to store up to 55 gallons of hazardous waste at the site where it was produced without the time limit requirements that central accumulation areas have to comply with. Once you reach the 55 gallons, you have three days to move it to the central accumulation area. Satellite accumulation areas also don’t require weekly inspections like the central area does, and there are no limits to the number of satellite areas you can have.
Even though the satellite accumulation areas don’t require weekly inspections, you are still required to make sure that your satellite accumulation area is safe. This means making sure the location is out of the way of walkways, exits, and drains. It is required to be within unobstructed line of site so whoever is working in that area can see it. Make sure you are keeping the lid on the container when it is not in use. Containers should also have a label, detailing the type of hazardous waste inside. You should also still be checking for leaks in the container and keep a spill kit on hand.