Residents of Chippewa County can dispose of hazardous household products at the Chippewa County Fairgrounds, Sat­urday, Oct. 2, between the hours of 9 a.m. and 1 p.m.

Residents of Chippewa County can dispose of hazardous household products at the Chippewa County Fairgrounds, Sat­urday, Oct. 2, between the hours of 9 a.m. and 1 p.m.

The collection, organized by environmental technician JoAnn Blomme and the county land and resource office, will accept used or leftover hazardous household items, at no cost to residents.

Leftover household products that contain corrosive, toxic, ignitable, or reactive ingredients are considered to be “household hazardous waste” or “HHW,” and need to be disposed of properly.

HHW includes pesticides, paint, paint thinners/removers, aerosols, rechargeable batteries (such as those found in cordless power tools, cellular and cordless phones, laptop computers, digital cameras, two-way radios, camcorders, remote control toys), LED, HID and fluorescent light bulbs, thermometers, thermostats (all of which contain mercury).

Businesses may also turn in used fluorescent bulbs at a cost of 25 cents per bulb.

“The collection is mainly for hazardous liquids and aerosols,” said Blomme.
Things like fingernail polish or polish remover, solvents and home pesticides are all hazardous and should be brought to the collection.

However, if the containers are empty, they can, in many cases, be recycled. If the liquid is gone and the container is dry, according to Blomme, it is generally not considered hazardous. Even empty aerosol containers, if all the pressure is released, do not need to be specially disposed of.

People are encouraged to read the labels. Products containing dangerous or hazardous ingredients are required to provide instructions for safe disposal.
Leftover soaps, shampoos, conditioners and lotions are not hazardous waste and therefore should not be brought to the collection site.

For latex paint needing to be disposed of, Blomme recommends leaving the container open or pouring the paint into a pan to dry out. When it is completely dry and hardened, which will not take long, it can be thrown into the trash without danger.

Motor oil and filters are hazardous waste and will be accepted at the collection, however, Blomme reminds people that there is also a regular recycling opportunity at Cenex on Highway 7.

She cautions that if the oil has been contaminated, by being mixed with water or other fluids, it cannot go to Cenex, and should be brought to the collection.

“The rule of thumb,” said Blomme, “is, if you’re not sure, bring it. We can test it at the collection site.”

Improper disposal, such as pouring solvents or pesticides down the drain, on the ground, into storm sewers, or putting items out with the trash is dangerous and can cause serious illness and/or danger.

Blomme also cautions people to use safe handling procedures when transporting products to the collection site. If a product is highly flammable, keep it separate and make sure it is packed securely.
She said businesses with items such as farm waste, etc., should contact her for special instructions.

Blomme is happy to answer any questions on hazardous waste, recycling or the Oct. 2 collection. She may be reached at (320) 269-6231 or  via e-mail at:

Consider reducing your purchase of products that contain hazardous ingredients. Learn about the use of alternative methods or products without hazardous ingredients. Vinegar and baking soda are examples of nonhazardous products that can take care of many household needs, such as cleaning, opening clogged drains, and removing odors.