Spring Clean For Safer Water

Saturday, April 5th 2008, 7:30 pm
By: News On 6

A recent study from the Associated Press found pharmaceuticals in the water supply of at least 24 major metropolitan areas. While tests show no signs of drugs in Tulsa's water, The Metropolitan Environment Trust says only you can keep it that way. NewsOn6.Com's Nicole Wiseman reports taking small steps to simply clean-out your garage, under your kitchen sink and inside your medicine cabinet can go a long way in making drinking water safe.

Household cleaners, paint thinners, and prescription drugs can potentially pollute our drinking water if they're not disposed of properly.

The Metropolitan Environmental Trust is holding its Pollutant Collection Event at the Tulsa Fairgrounds. It's their way of giving you a chance to safely toss out any unused or unwanted materials that could be hazardous to your health.

"All of the things we take here have a potential to cause damage to humans, to animals, to wildlife and it also damages ecosystems, water, waterways," said Julie Alexander with The M.e.t.

From paint thinners, to fertilizers, to even fluorescent bulbs, the event gives you a chance to safely get rid of just about anything.

More than three and a half billion prescriptions were written last year alone. Workers sort through the drugs and other household items many have dug up.

"I had all this stuff piled in the garage. I change my own oil and I have antifreeze and some other stuff. I just needed to get rid of it. This is the only way I know how," said one Bixby homeowner.

It's the only way Alexander says it should be done. She says it's best to leave it to the professionals to ensure these items aren't showing up, where they don't belong.

"Depending on what chemical it is, we do the right thing with it. So, you know when you bring your chemicals to us, we will dispose of it properly, which the average homeowner can't do," said Julie Alexander with The M.e.t.

Officials say never flush any chemicals or drugs down the toilet and don't pour them down the sink.

The last day to drop off items at the fairgrounds is Sunday, April 6. You can stop by anytime between 10:00 in the morning and three in the afternoon. Enter the fairgrounds from 15th Street at the Gate 7 entrance.

The cost is free. For a complete list of what you can and cannot drop off visit The Metropolitan Environmental Trust website.

By Nicole Wiseman, NewsOn6.com and Kyle Dierking, Video Journalist. Find more of their stories in our Web Exclusives section.