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Spills / Releases

Environmental Spill / Release (Outdoors)

To report an environmental incident, including dumping or other discharges to a stormwater drain, please contact the Physical Plant at 221-7456, or EHS at 221-6103, or email Carl Gerhold at If possible to do so safely, take action to stop the release and prevent or minimize releases to storm sewers.


Fuel and Oil Spills

In the event of a fuel (gasoline or diesel) or oil spill, contact the Physical Plant work order line at ext. 7424. The Physical Plant maintains spill kits in various locations around campus to control the spread of these liquids and to get the spill cleaned up as quickly as possible.


Hazardous Materials Releases

-          Preparedness

  • Obtain the appropriate training for chemicals you work with,
  • Be sure you know how to obtain a copy of the MSDS,
  • Be sure spill supplies are available and know how to use them.


-          Spill Kit Contents

  • Spill pads, pillows, or other organic absorption materials
  • Sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) for acid (except HF) spills
  • Calcium carbonate or HF specific spill pillow for HF spills
  • Hazardous waste labels
  • Heavy nitrile gloves
  • Zip lock or plastic bags and tape to seal closed
  • Dust pan and brush


-          Response

  • In case of imminent danger to health, property, or the environment
    • Isolate the area of spill (e.g. close doors, close vent hoods, set booms with spill socks, etc.)
    • Leave the area and pull the fire alarm to initiate building evacuation.
    • Alert campus police immediately and provide as much detailed information as possible for emergency responders.
  • When there is not an imminent danger
    • Use appropriate materials to contain the spill
    • Render first aid if necessary
    • Refer to the MSDS of the spilled materials for additional actions.
    • Finish clean-up of spill and contact EHS for assistance if needed.
  • Exposure or injury reporting must be done as soon as possible via the APSU Departmental Incident Report Form.


-          Spill Clean-Up Procedures

  • Spills of Oils, Organic liquids, and/or Solvents:
    • Cover spilled material with enough spill pads or use spill pillows to contain all liquid
    • Start from the outer edge of the spill and work towards center
    • Use a brush and dust pan to sweep up saturated spill pads: avoid creating dust.
    • Or, while wearing gloves, pick up saturated spill Pillows
    • Place material in zip lock bag and seal the bag
    • If the material is hazardous, affix a hazardous waste label to the bag and hold for a hazardous waste pickup
    • Small amounts of oils mixed with an absorbent may be bagged and placed in the dumpster if there are no hazardous materials present.
  • Spills of Acids (except Hydrofluoric Acid) or Bases:
    • Apply enough acid neutralizer or sodium bicarbonate (for acids)to cover the spill
    • Apply enough base neutralizer (for bases) to cover the spill
    • Start from the outer edges of the spill and move toward the center
    • Wait until all bubbling action has stopped
    • Check the pH of the mixture, adjust the pH as needed until it is between 5.5 and 9.0
    • Materials with a pH of 5.5-9.0 may be disposed down the drain with plenty of water.


  • Spills of Hydrofluoric Acid
    • Avoid all skin, eyes, or respiratory contact with the vapor or liquid
    • Cover spill completely with calcium carbonate (or an HF-compatible spill pillow) working from the outer edge toward the center of the spill
    • Cover spill and calcium carbonate mixture with absorbent material
    • Place saturated material in a zip lock bag and seal the bag
    • Affix a hazardous waste label to the bag and hold for a hazardous waste pickup