Household hazardous waste and asbestos

Household hazardous waste and asbestos

Hazardous wastes from your home

We know that sometimes you might have some items to dispose of that could be classed as hazardous. Things like this should not be put in your wheeled bins, but disposed of carefully.

Our Household Waste & Recycling Centres will accept the following domestic hazardous waste:

  • batteries

  • car batteries

  • fluorescent tubes (such as those from strip lights and sunbeds) and compact fluorescent lamps (low-energy bulbs)

  • TV and computer monitors

  • electrical equipment

  • engine oil

  • cooking oil

  • gas bottles

  • fridges and freezers - at the Walbottle site only

Household chemicals, pesticides and anything you think may be hazardous should be handed to one of our attendants for safe storage and disposal.

Please note that we do not accept oxygen/acetylene bottles, fire extinguishers, helium canisters or other similar compressed gas bottles, which need to be returned to the correct organisation. Where you can return the canister is normally on a label on the canister itself.


Asbestos in your home

When materials that contain asbestos are disturbed or damaged, fibres are released into the air. When these fibres are inhaled they can cause serious diseases, such as mesothelioma, asbestosis and asbestos-related lung cancer. These diseases will not affect you immediately; they often take a long time to develop, but once diagnosed, it is often too late to do anything. This is why it is important that you protect yourself now.

There are 3 main types of asbestos still found in premises. These are commonly called:

  • blue asbestos (crocidolite)

  • brown asbestos (amosite)

  • white asbestos (chrysotile)

All of them are dangerous, but blue and brown asbestos are more hazardous than white. You cannot identify them just by their colour.

If you have any asbestos to get rid of, you will need to contact a specialist private contractor to arrange removal and disposal safely. Asbestos is not accepted at any of our Household Waste and Recycling Centres.

Some materials are lower risk and you or your contractor can work on them providing you and/or they take the right safety precautions – this is known as non-licensed asbestos work. Other materials are too dangerous for you to work on and only a licensed asbestos contractor can carry out these jobs – this is known as licensed asbestos work. Licences are issued by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE). Some non-licensed work still has to be notified to the HSE or the Council (depending on the health and safety enforcing authority for the type of premises/activity).

Please refer to the HSE’s advice pages for further information.

All work with asbestos needs to be carried out with the appropriate controls in place, and those carrying out the work must have had the correct level of information, instruction and training to protect themselves (and others in the area) from the risks to health that exposure to asbestos causes.

If the contractor transports the asbestos, they must be registered with the Environment Agency.  Ask to see these documents as it is your legal duty to check. It is advisable to obtain a receipt and a copy of the consignment note. The movement of the asbestos must comply with the Hazardous Waste (England and Wales) Regulations 2005.

Asbestos should not be disturbed by cutting, drilling or breaking it. If you need any physical analysis or require removal we advise you contact analytical service providers that specialize in asbestos. They can be found in the telephone directory or by a general internet search. We would recommend the use of analytical services that are UKAS accredited.


Further information

For more information on asbestos,  asbestos licensing,  asbestos licensed contractors please visit the Health & Safety Executive website.

The Council may be able to provide some general information - please contact Public Safety and Regulation:



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