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Hazardous materials at work

Commercial hazardous materials are usually packaged in larger or bulk containers and are often used in commercial manufacturing. In many cases, these products have a higher active ingredient concentration than consumer products, and as a result can present a greater danger if not handled, stored or disposed of properly.

Storing and transporting commercial hazardous materials

The City does not regulate storing and transporting of commercial hazardous materials, these are governed by municipal, provincial and federal regulations. However, we do have information on transporting dangerous goods.

Disposal of commercial hazardous materials

The City of Calgary disposes of residential household chemicals only not commercial hazardous materials. Business owners and commercial operators with waste chemicals to recycle should call 311 (from within Calgary) or 403-268-2489 (from outside Calgary) or look in the Yellow Pages under "Waste disposal – hazardous" for disposal options.

The disposal of hazardous materials on private or City property is a serious offence. If you see or know of illegal disposal, please assist us in protecting the environment by reporting the incident so it can be cleaned up before extensive damage occurs.

Hazardous material spills at work

Sometimes a spill of a hazardous material occurs in the workplace and you are unable to clean it up, or are not allowed to clean it up the way that the manufacturer recommends because:

  • Ccompany policy dictates that you do not clean it up
  • You don't know how to clean up
  • You don't have the supplies to clean up
  • You feel it is too dangerous to clean up
  • The spill is causing a health or safety risk

If a hazardous material spill occurs at work you should put your company's emergency response plan into motion immediately. Part of that plan should be to call 9-1-1 from a safe place, away from the hazard.

Call 9-1-1 for a hazardous material spill

When you call 9-1-1, the emergency dispatch operator will ask questions to find out about the problem. Be prepared to answer as many of the following questions that would describe the problem as you can:

  • What is your telephone number if we need to call you back?
  • What is your address?
  • What is the nature of the problem?
  • Is the substance toxic or hazardous?
  • Is there a name or placard on the vehicle or container?
  • What color, shape, number, or symbol is on the label or placard?
  • Is it a solid, liquid or gas?
  • Does it have a smell or odour?
  • Is it having an effect on people or things?
  • How much has leaked?
  • How fast is it leaking?
  • Is it flowing toward a sewer opening or a reservoir?
  • What was it contained in?
  • Are you, or is anyone else in the immediate area of the problem?
  • Are you able to stay nearby, at a safe distance, to meet fire department personnel?

Notify your supervisor or the designated response team member of the problem immediately. If your company has an emergency response plan follow it carefully.

If no emergency response plan exists, follow the directions given to you by the fire dispatcher until help arrives. The directions given by the fire dispatcher will include watching for the fire department to arrive and directing firefighters to the area of the problem.​​