Re: Microwave - Medical waste disposal

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From:Terry J Mattoon <>

Hi Russ & Others:

Our Incinerator has also gone down the tubes.  We've been without it for
a number of years.  I recycle our formalin, xylene & alcohol to save
money and my units have paid for themselves many times over.  I have B/R
Instrument recyclers from 1992 when they first came out.  Now they are a
lot more sophisticated and probably safer.  I have been using them
without any hazards due to the fact that we are careful and very safety
Some of our waste in the lab gets autoclaved and the rest gets red bagged
and hauled away to God only knows where.  And yes you are correct, you or
your facility is responsible for that waste if there should be an
accident.  Actually all facilities that have waste on that vehicle that
particular day have to share in the cost of cleanup!

I would think that microwaving would have to be done under a hood and
safety for flammability of waste would be a concern.  Have you ever
microwaved a bag of popcorn too long and had it catch on fire?  Or had
solutions in coplin jars that you are microwaving for a special stain
boil over and make a mess?

This should be an interesting concept, if you hear of anything let me
know.  I'd really be interested in what comes about with this.

Terry J. Mattoon HT(ASCP)
VA Med Ctr.  #113
White River Jct.,VT   05001
(802) 296-5193  (direct # to lab secretary)
802-296-6328  -  FAX

On Fri, 28 Jul 2000 12:23:14 +0000 (GMT0BST) RUSS ALLISON
<> writes:
> Dear Terry and others,
> I am closely interested in such experience.
> We were due to go down that road about twelve months ago.  We 
> had our recntly re-furbished incinerator fail an inspection because 
> the monitoring regs. had been recently revised and it would cost in 
> excess of 1,000,000 pounds STERLING to have it upgraded (the 
> refurb had already cost #163#1m plus).
> Microwave/steaming was decided against and waste is now 
> disposed of via contractors.  The thing I am most nervous about is 
> that apparently, WE are responsible for the waste until it reaches 
> the contractors premises many, many miles away and despite the 
> fact that THEY transport it!!!
> I understand the powers that be are now re-considering 
> microwaving.  I leart when it was first proposed that the waste 
> would pass, on a conveyor belt, through six successive microwave 
> ovens.  It would be "macerated" either before or after - I had lost 
> interest by then - and finally go to a resting place in land-fill.
> I don't know what has happened to make an unsuitable option 
> suddenly become acceptable again.
> Russ
> Russ Allison, 
> Dental School
> Cardiff
> Wales

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