Household Hazardous Waste

"Back in the day", anytime the general public had some old gasoline or paint or other hazardous material they no longer wanted, they would drop it off at their local fire department. This was promulgated further by some departments encouraging this practice.

With the increased focus on environmental pollutants and stricter regulations placed upon landfills and hazardous waste haulers, fire chiefs and their associated jurisdictions realized this practice was unsafe, prone to liability, and financially costly. In essence, those departments who thought this was simply another way of providing service to the public learned they were now responsible for the proper disposal of said items. Esoteric terminology such as "hazardous waste generator" and "cradle-to-grave" were part of the discussions during the process of proper disposal. 

Forward-thinking fire departments realized this was not something for which they were trained nor did they have an obligation to act as the means of disposal for the public's hazardous materials. And progressive solid waste authorities realized they could play a large role in mitigating both this type of issue and that of environmental pollution.


Central Ohio had the good fortune of having their solid waste authority implement a simple but effective alternative to adding more hazardous items to the landfill. The Solid Waste Authority of Central Ohio (SWACO) manages a household hazardous waste program that permits residents to transport and drop-off a myriad of materials at a permanent site in Columbus or during a drive-through event that is usually held in conjunction with a local municipality.

We encourage Worthington area residents to take advantage of this no-cost option whenever they have items such as mower gas, old oil-based paint, car batteries, old fire extinguishers, or other hazardous items for which they need a safe disposal option.

You can find a complete list of the current materials they accept, plus information about their drop-off site and any upcoming drive-through events, at

HHW Materials Graphic
SWACO HHW Drive Through