Top 7 Recycling Tips for the Summer

1. We’re only halfway through summer, but the kids are already going stir crazy. Entertain them by turning some of your trash into activities:

  • Use washed-out soup and vegetable cans and a string to create a telephone
  • Create papier-mâché metal coffee cans to hold markers and colored pencils (online tutorial here)
  • Create a bird feeder out of a rinsed-out milk jug or plastic coffee can
  • Use the bottom of a two-liter soda bottle as a paint stamp that looks like a flower, or paint ten empty two-liter bottles as bowling pins, with rolled-up old aluminum foil as the ball (DIY Despicable Me Minions-themed bowling set)
  • Create a mosaic or posters out of old magazines and newspapers

The opportunities are practically endless for reusing household materials. Give the kids a start and watch how many recycled crafts they come up with!

2. Planning to go to the beach this summer?

Everyone enjoys a sunny day at the beach. Make sure you stay hydrated, especially if you plan to tan or swim! Instead of buying many small drink bottles, buy drinks or drink mixes in bulk and fill reusable bottles. It’s not only better for the environment, but more cost-effective in the long run. When visiting the beaches, be sure to follow the “No Footprint” rule: take out everything you bring in, to protect the ocean and its natural inhabitants.

3. BBQ season is approaching and you’ve got parties to host!

Summer is a popular time for pool parties, barbeques and other outdoor festivities. At your next party, set the table with reusable napkins and dinnerware; you can reuse cardboard six-pack holders for condiments and party gifts. Make recycling convenient for your guests by putting a clearly-labeled recycling bin by the trash can. It’s helpful to make an announcement about recycling when your guests arrive.

4. Taking a road trip with the entire family?

One of the worst parts of road trips is the accumulation of trash. You can combat this by:

  • Keeping a plastic trash bag in the passenger seat to collect garbage and keep the car clean
  • Packing your own snacks, such as nuts, dried fruit, trail mix and chips in reusable baggies instead of buying individual servings
  • Reusing plastic shopping bags to keep liquid toiletries, dirty shoes or wet bathing suits contained
  • Packing activities and games in recyclable grocery store bags – easy access and easy to clean!

5. Grow your own food from organic leftovers

If you’re sick of the grocery store, this is the one for you. You can re-plant several types of produce indoors. Some of the best-performing common vegetables are celery, sweet peppers and hot peppers, garlic greens, scallions, chives, microgreens, leafy greens and herbs such as basil and cilantro. In the Northeast, you can also re-plant berries, peaches, oranges and apples. Even if they don’t bear fruit in the season, they are aesthetic and make great windowsill plants as saplings.

6. Exercising is not only great for your body, but can help the environment, too.

Though programs like the HOV lane have been established to combat traffic and CO2 emissions, it’s tough to find friends willing to carpool. This summer, make the most of the beautiful weather to walk or bike around town and encourage your friends and family members to do the same.

7. Get social with it!

  • Like to read? Instead of buying new books, create a Book Exchange with friends and neighbors, or visit your local library.
  • Many towns on Long Island have developed community gardens where you can either volunteer or purchase a plot to grow your own fruits, vegetables and flowers.
  • Clean out your closet and join the neighborhood yard sale or community tag sale this summer – you’ll recycle your used clothing and shoes, books, games, movies, sports goods and flatware and make a few bucks to boot!

Spring Cleaning? You Might Be Surprised What You Can Recycle

It’s that time of year again – the sun warms your backyard, flowers are beginning to bud, and you can’t wait to clear out the house and welcome in the spring. We’ve got some handy spring cleaning tips to help you recycle.

Maybe you’re helping your parents clean out your childhood bedroom so they can use the space, or maybe you’re finally tackling the garage [work room, basement, kids’ play room, office] that you’ve been meaning to organize. There’s bound to be a plethora of items you can get rid of without thinking twice – like VHS tapes, for instance – but be sure to check with local stores or follow our links to see if you can recycle these things.

Trophies

Unless you’re a professional soccer star, chances are that you’ve outgrown that fourth place trophy from third grade, even if your mom made you keep it all these years. You can recycle them or donate the old trophies to be reused for new trophies so other kids have a chance to shine.

LEGOs

Missing one piece to the set you wanted to give your nephew? Still have an old diorama in your attic? Get rid of old LEGOs by sending them in to Brick Recycler, which will donate them to foster children.

Holiday cards and greeting cards

Did you find a stash of cards under your bed while you were cleaning? Don’t just toss them in the bin – send them to St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital to be reused and sent to children in need.

Printer cartridges

Empty ink cartridges can be returned to stores like Staples, which will reward you with $2 per cartridge in-store credit.

VHS tapes and CDs

Everyone knows movies and MP3s are on laptops and phones now, so why keep the bulk? Donate VHS tapes here and old CDs here.

Crayons

Broken crayons can be melted down to add color to your DIY candles or other crafts, or recycled here to make new colors.

Shoes

Did you get on the Croc wave? Have you run down your favorite sneaks? Fear not – there are a lot of recycling programs for shoes and soles.

Toothbrushes, Tupperware, Cigarettes, and K-Cups

Terra Cycle will take all these and more. Visit their website to see what products they can recycle for you.

Glasses and Hearing Aids

Old glasses or hearing aids can be recycled and put to better use than at the bottom of your junk drawer. Donate here. You can also donate inhalers.

Bras

Much like your favorite pair of jeans, it’s easy to wear out something you wear frequently. The Bosom Buddies Program will take those old drawer-cloggers off your hands and donate them to girls and women in need.

Stockings and Tights

You know the pair – the one classy skin-colored pair you always need on hand, and which always has a run? Instead of tossing this frustrating accessory in the trash, donate it to No Nonsense, where the nylon will be recycled into insulation or playground flooring.

Be the Planet’s Sweetheart by Upcycling Crafts this Valentine’s Day

This Valentine’s Day, express your appreciation to the ones you love most — and the planet — by upcycling! Here’s a list of the top household items that you can upcycle into the perfect valentine:

  • Paper Heart Garland — Cut paper into 1/2-inch wide strips that vary in length. Fold each piece in half crisply and bend the ends in toward the middle so that they overlap by 1/4-inch. Staple the two ends together and hang the heart from a piece of twine. To make more hearts repeat the process. Tip: Hang the heart strands from the ceiling or drape horizontally across a room.
  • Scarves — Create and give scarves by knotting together or sewing together scrap fleece, old t-shirts, pajamas and any leftover materials or fabric you may have. Tip: Two big pieces of fabric can be knotted together to create a blanket!
  • Tin Can Flower Pots — Decorate old metal cans and turn them into a container for herbs, flowers or potted plants. Use a leftover coffee, soup or tomato can and decorate with fabric, paint or mod podge. Tip: A ribbon, bracelet or other garnish can help make this craft shine!
  • Candy Holder — Use decorated paper towel rolls as candy holders for your loved ones (this is a great classroom gift!). Place small candies inside the tube, wrap it in cellophane or wrapping paper so that there is extra on the ends and secure each side closed using ribbon. Tip: If you run one scissor blade along a balloon ribbon, it will curl.
  • Message in a Bottle — Use washed-out salad dressing or condiment glass bottles as special message holders for loved ones. Write your note, roll it up and place it in the bottle. Tip: Tie a small length of twine around the top for an added touch.

25 Ways to Kick-Start Your New Year’s Resolution by Reusing, Reducing and Recycling

Many Americans find it difficult to commit to their New Year’s resolutions, especially those that include organizing and cleaning out the house. When a project has been put on the backburner for months, or even years, finding a starting point can be frustrating and overwhelming. Instead of throwing away all that clutter, see what you can reuse to help the planet and ease your worry.

In Your Cleaning Closet:
1. Wash out old orange juice and milk containers and use them to store homemade cleaners, such as vinegar and water, which is both a cheaper and safer option for the planet than chemical cleaners.

2. Use your mesh fruit or vegetable bag instead of tossing it. Wad it up and use it like a Brillo pad to scrub counters and tough surfaces.

3. Don’t throw out those used dryer sheets – keep used them in stinky rooms, such as the basement, dog’s room or mudroom for a fresher smell. Be sure to replace them regularly, as the sheets will lose their potency over time.

4. Use your plastic dry cleaning bag as a garbage can liner. Simply tie off the hanger end and place inside your trash bin. Use plastic bags you may have picked up at the grocery or pharmacy for smaller wastebaskets in your bedroom, office or bathroom.

To Stay Organized:
5. If you hosted a New Year’s Eve party, you may have an empty wine bottle box lying around. Use the conveniently placed cardboard dividers to separate and store lightweight shoes. (Please note that winter boots will be too heavy for this project).

6. Pickles, olives, jams and jellies, applesauce and condiments come in glass jars of all shapes and sizes. Upcycle them and use them to organize the small items forming clutter on desks, kitchen counters, vanities and more. Jars are handy for pens and pencils, spices and flour, makeup and bracelets, toys, candies and knickknacks. If you’re looking for something with more visual appeal, add a dresser knob to the lid and paint it, or add a ribbon around the middle of the jar.

7. Use the empty round CD holder to coil and store your extension cords.

8. If you’re like the average American, you use 57 squares of toilet paper a day! One person alone goes through an average of one roll every 10 to 12 days. Instead of tossing these away, opt to use your cardboard roll for small cord storage (fold cords back and forth and use the roll as a sleeve) or to keep your wrapping paper from unrolling (slip over the tightly rolled wrapping paper to hold in place).

9. Binder clips are also useful for organizing cords and cables, such as a laptop charger, HDMI cable, phone charger, iPod charger and speakers or headphones. String the head of the cable (the part that plugs into a charging port on your device) through the metal loop of a binder clip and secure it to the edge of your desk.

For Snack and Mealtime Prep:
10. Still unpacking from your trip to the grocery store? Use those berry boxes to hold small packets or spices in the pantry. They’re great for organization and you won’t waste the container.

11. Reuse margarine, yogurt and cream cheese containers for frozen meals, snacks or lunches-on-the-go.

12. Do you use a pint-sized coffee creamer? When it’s empty, wash it out the container and use it to store pourable sugar or salt. Since it’s airtight when closed, you’ll keep out ants and other critters.

13. Reinforce your picnic plates with Frisbees — this way, you can reuse your plate throughout the day at a cookout or graduation party, and you put your old Frisbee to good use!

14. Is your little one a messy eater? Next time your child is enjoying a Popsicle, use cupcake wrappers around the bottom of the stick to prevent messy drips and spills.

15. Reuse your hanging shoe rack to organize your pantry — you could sort meal storage by day of the week or by type of food (for instance: snack, dessert, side dish, etc.).

16. Don’t throw out that empty ketchup or mustard bottle – wash and reuse it for pancake mix to make perfectly circular pancakes or try your hand at pancake art, making designs using the batter. Who knows, you could be the next van Gogh of breakfast foods.

For DIY Crafts and Design:
17. Have an old picture frame? Upcycle it into a serving tray or jewelry organizer. For the earring holder, remove the glass, string threads a few inches apart across the frame and hang your earrings from the threads, then prop up the frame on your dresser or hang it on the wall.

18. When you rifle through your attic, basement or closets, keep an eye out for cassette tapes. You can decorate the cases and use as gift card holders for an upcoming birthday or holiday.

19. If you have a handful of mismatched silver utensils, nail them to wooden plaques and bend the handles to create wall hooks for keys, scarves or other small and lightweight items.

20. Are you a wine connoisseur with leftover corks? Create a homemade corkboard to gift to someone that can be used to hang memos or jewelry or create a wreath for the front door that can be easily changed for each holiday.

21. Your garage and storage closets may be overwhelmed with old athletic equipment, like tennis rackets, but you can repurpose these into frames for oblong mirrors by removing the wire or plastic strings.

In the Yard:
22. Cut off the bottom of your plastic water bottle to create a funnel for cooking or changing motor oil.

23. Twist brown paper bags into small rolls to be used as fire starters for your hearth, BBQ or fire pit. This can be done with greasy or dirty paper bags as well as clean ones.

24. Recycle your water — your washing machine releases excess water at the end of each cycle. Why not use this to water your lawn? Reroute the washer’s water line and be sure to use biodegradable laundry detergent. This recycled water can save you money on your next utility bill!

25. Do you have extra envelopes lying around from holiday greeting cards? Cut them in half to create seed packets that you can seal with a staple or paperclip, or trim off half-inch corners for easy-to-use bookmarks that hug your page corner.

Do you have other ideas to reuse or recycle household items? We’d love to share them! Please send us an email with your name and idea and check back with us to see when it is published.

Gershow Recycling takes aluminum, brass, copper, steel, cast iron, appliances, cars and vehicles. In keeping with its philosophy of “Conserving the Future by Recycling the Past,” Gershow Recycling purchases scrap metal that would otherwise have wound up in local landfills and turns them into high-quality scrap products for recycling. Gershow has nine locations in Brooklyn, New Hyde Park, Valley Stream, Freeport, Lindenhurst, Huntington Station, Bay Shore, Medford and Riverhead. For more information, call (631) 289-6188.

Pledge to Go Green in 2016: Reuse, Reduce, Recycle

Exercise, increased time with loved ones and overall personal well-being are often at the top of New Year’s resolution lists, but rarely do people account for the environment in their pledges. This year, we’re urging everyone to be part of the green movement and reduce your carbon footprint, which is an estimate of how much carbon each person emits annually. But, did you know the environment also has a direct effect on you? Light pollution can weaken your overall vision, while air and water pollution affects your bodily health in both direct and indirect ways.

Start 2016 off right by developing good habits that reduce your carbon footprint. We’ve outlined some basic steps that you can take to accomplish this, using the basic Reduce-Reuse-Recycle ideas that we were taught in school. These are sure to help save you money, too.

Reuse: There are many ways you can reuse common household items instead of heading to the store. Get creative with your kids and teach them to use recycled materials, such as cereal boxes, toilet paper rolls, scrap paper, soda bottles, tin cans, and old tissue paper or packing peanuts for a variety of different in place of common items. Buy eco-friendly products, such as a hard plastic water bottle (see the best-rated brands) instead of individual bottles of Poland Spring or Aquafina. Though these companies do encourage their customers to recycle, the bottles use a non-durable plastic that ultimately cannot be reused and thus requires the creation of a new plastic bottle after each use.

Reduce: Let go of incandescent bulbs, and opt instead for CFLs, or better yet, LEDs, which exhaust just 1/5 and 1/10 of the wattage of incandescent, respectively. This will greatly decrease the impact we have on the power grid. What’s more, you’ll reap the savings both on your energy bill and through lightbulb purchases as 30 incandescent bulbs cost an average family more than $300 annually, whereas LEDs will cost only $30 in the same timespan. If you like a bright household, look for bulbs with high Lumens (not Watts), as these emit brighter light.

Recycle: Of course you’re familiar with traditional paper, plastic and metal recycling, but there are many ways to recycle. You could send your washing machine wastewater into the garden, purchase a low-flow toilet, give your used motor oil to a garage, mulch your Christmas tree, recycle burned out holiday lights to your local home improvement store and compost your food scraps. Try to purchase only recycled materials to support companies that promote recycling and to do a small part in decreasing your personal carbon impact.

In keeping with its philosophy of “Conserving the Future by Recycling the Past,” Gershow Recycling purchases scrap metal that would otherwise have wound up in local landfills and turns them into high-quality scrap products for recycling. For more information, call (631) 289-6188.

I’m Dreaming of a Green Christmas (Hanukkah, Kwanza, and Festivus)

Recycling Tips for an Environmentally Friendly Holiday Season

Deck the halls with boughs of… reclaimed materials! With children, colleagues, parents, teachers, extended family and neighbors on your shopping list, gift giving and holiday decorating can become pricey. Ditch the expensive store items and opt for homemade solutions, made from natural or recycled materials, to get more bang for your buck. Gershow has provided a list of eco-friendly décor and gift options:

1. Puzzle pieces can become reindeer or wreaths.

2. Burned out light bulbs with some paint make the perfect penguin, snowman or reindeer that serve as hanging ornaments.

3. Tin cans can be stacked and painted white to create a snowman; or cover one with candy canes to hold poinsettias or other festive plants.

4. Toilet paper rolls can be folded to create mini gift boxes (great for jewelry) or ornaments.

5. Wine corks combined with sturdy twigs turn into miniature reindeer. You can also add decorative ribbon to make ornaments or glue them to a paper circle to create a wreath.

6. For a fun spin on outside décor, cut a log on an angle and paint the exposed tops to resemble holiday characters, or add paint or glitter glue to pine cones.

7. White soda bottle caps glued three in a row will create hanging snowman ornaments, or you can string green ribbon through soda tabs to make a wreath.

8. Build a Menorah with eight empty paper rolls, a paper towel roll and blue and white construction paper. For the Seven Candles (Mishumaa Sabre) for Kwanzaa, use seven empty paper rolls and cover using black, red and green construction paper. Stack cardboard boxes – large to small – to create a Kinara (candle stand).

9. Keyboard or Scrabble pieces can be used to spell out a message of joy on cards, signs and other décor.

10. Magazines, old holiday cards and scrap paper can be cut up to create a banner, a Star of David or snowflakes.

Do you have other great green holiday design ideas? We’d love to add them! Contact us at (631) 289-6188 or www-info@gershow.com. Wishing you the happiest holiday season!

Gershow Recycling takes aluminum, brass, copper, steel, cast iron, appliances, cars and vehicles. In keeping with its philosophy of “Conserving the Future by Recycling the Past,” Gershow Recycling purchases scrap metal that would otherwise have wound up in local landfills and turns them into high-quality scrap products for recycling. Gershow has nine locations in Brooklyn, New Hyde Park, Valley Stream, Freeport, Lindenhurst, Huntington Station, Bay Shore, Medford and Riverhead. For more information, call (631) 289-6188.

Gershow Recycling’s Green Halloween Tips and Tricks

Halloween is right around the corner and your children can’t wait for that day. While a simple visit to neighbors and friends results in free candy for your children, not everything associated with the holiday is free.

If you’ve been to a Halloween store, then kids’ costumes prices probably give you a scare. Even major discount chains offer costumes at inflated prices. The average child’s costume currently sells between $20 and $50. With growth spurts always on the horizon, it’s often not practical to shell out that much cash for costumes every year.

Gershow Recycling has some DIY ideas for you that are both cost-effective and eco-friendly. With parents recalling their own homemade costumes of yesteryear, upcycled solutions are popular once again. Here are some costume ideas that will offer a Halloween solution without lightening your wallet:

  • Gumball Machine: tape a clear garbage bag around your child’s waist and shoulders and fill it with small balloons to make a colorful and funny costume. Another way to make a gumball machine is to glue pom-poms to cover a shirt. Have your child wear red or black pants and a belt with a large buckle.
  • Cats and Dogs: hot glue or tape your child’s favorite dog and cat stuffed animals to an umbrella. Dress him or her up in a traditional raincoat and boots, and you’re ready to go!
  • Duck: Have extra scrap paper at the office? Cut each sheet into the shape of two petals and attach to your child’s shirt, layering one row over the other as you work your way up from the bottom of the shirt (like eaves). Have your child color a beak and fasten it around his or her head with string to complete the look.
  • LEGO: Take an old cardboard box and up to eight rinsed-out soup cans. Glue the cans to the front of the box. Cut one short side of the box off — this empty space will be where your child’s legs go. Cut holes for the head and arms, then paint the entire costume red, yellow, green, black, white or blue.
  • Harry Potter: Grab an old, oversized black t-shirt and cut it down the middle to make a robe (put to the side a strip of the shirt from where you cut it to serve as a belt to tie it closed). A basic red t-shirt and jeans from your child’s closet will be perfect under the “robe.” To create the wand, grab a stick off a tree. You can cover it with papier-maché, paint and glitter. For the iconic glasses, bend a wire hanger into glasses with needle-nose pliers; use red lipstick to draw a scar. If your child is more the Hermione Granger-type, swap the glasses and scar for frizzy hair. This can be done by putting tiny braids in her hair before she goes to sleep.
  • Angel: Cut out the shape of two angel wings from a piece of cardboard; cover in coffee filters and pop small holes into the center using a hole punch. Grab shoelaces or string and pull them through the holes, then have your child wear the wings like a backpack. Create a halo by twisting gold pipe cleaners into a circle and attaching them to a headband. A basic white outfit from your child’s closet can be worn along with these accessories.
  • Hot Air Balloon: Cut off the top and bottom of a cardboard box. Paint it to look like a basket and use a hole puncher and ribbon to create straps for the basket. Glue four square wooden dowels inside the box so that they protrude above your child’s head. With the cut part of the box, create a border around the top of the dowels. Punch holes into the border to affix the balloon. For the balloon, take a large, colorful plastic shopping bag, create a solid structure using leftover pieces from the box inside the bag, tie it closed and then to the string from the basket. You can also repurpose a large bouncy ball as the balloon by covering it with strips of colorful paper and sitting it on the dowels and supportive cardboard structure.
  • Alice’s Ace of Hearts: Using stiff red felt or cardboard, cut the shape of a heart with a hole in the center for the face. Glue a strand of elastic to either side to serve as a strap for the child’s head. Cut a neck hole at the middle of the closed end of a pillowcase and holes on either side for the arms. Create aces and hearts with red felt, glue or simple-stitch to the pillow case. Upcycle a cereal box as the candy holder. Enlarge and print the design of a card box, and glue it to the cereal box, affixing a ribbon to serve as the handle.
  • Chalkboard: Cut the large sides off a cardboard box to make a sandwich board for either side of a body. Paint the box pieces with black chalkboard paint and draw equations on the cardboard to finish the look. String shoelaces or a ribbon through each side for straps.

Voilà! Have a Happy Halloween.

Spring Cleaning May Mean Money in Your Pocket

Bring Old Lawn Furniture, Barbecues and Appliances to Gershow

Because of a last-minute snowstorm that blew through parts of the country in late March, many people got off to a late start on their “spring cleaning,” getting rid of unwanted items lying around the house, garage and outdoors. Gershow Recycling is reminding those taking part in their springtime rituals that it is not too late to bring in their unwanted scrap metal to be recycled. The company says that many people may not realize that there may be some money in the scrap metal they are about to throw away.

“Many people who are cleaning out their garages and fixing up their homes may have some scrap lying around that can be recycled,” said Kevin Gershowitz, President, Gershow Recycling. “Anyone who is getting rid of items for spring cleaning such as lawn furniture, window screens, barbecues and lawn tools such as rakes and shovels can bring them to Gershow. When they bring their scrap to Gershow, they will not only be helping to preserve the environment, but they will get money for it as well.”

Gershow Recycling urges everyone to bring in their unwanted items to one of its nine Long Island and Brooklyn locations to receive cash for their scrap metal. Gershow accepts all types of metal, including aluminum, brass, copper, steel, cast iron, appliances, cars and vehicles. In keeping with its philosophy of “Conserving the Future by Recycling the Past,” Gershow Recycling purchases scrap metal that would have otherwise wound up in local landfills, and turns them into high-quality scrap products for recycling. The company recycles both ferrous and non-ferrous products.

There are nine convenient locations throughout Long Island and the metropolitan New York area:

  • Brooklyn
  • New Hyde Park
  • Valley Stream
  • Freeport
  • Huntington Station
  • Lindenhurst
  • Bay Shore
  • Medford
  • Riverhead

Make a Fashion Statement at Work — Wear Protective Gear

Spotlight on Safety:

Each year, more than 4.1 million serious workplace injuries occur and each day, more than 12 workers die on the job, according to the United States Department of Labor. Therefore, it is crucial to take precautions by wearing the proper clothing, gear and footwear while in the workplace, especially if you are working amongst hazardous conditions.

Some essential safety wear includes gloves, glasses, boots, ear plugs, hats, and jackets that should be worn in industrial settings, whether it is handling heavy machinery or dangerous chemicals. Wearing the correct gear can be a matter of life and death for many workers. Below is a list of protective clothing items and why they are necessary:

  • Helmets/hats — These should be worn when working with large equipment, working at high levels outside, or even around moving objects. A bolt, rivet or tool can hit an employee’s head, which can result in permanent impairment or possibly death if it is not properly covered.
  • Safety glasses — Eyes can be damaged from dust, flying particles, broken metal or chemical splashes. Failure to wear protective eyewear may result in permanent loss of sight. Remember to wear a good pair that fully covers both of your eyes when working with chemicals, power equipment, and around machines.
  • Safety boots — Workers who work outdoors with heavy industrial equipment or indoor areas where sharp objects might have fallen on the ground are advised to invest in rubber boots, or metal toe-cap boots that fully protect the soles of the feet and toes in case of a fall or an accidental drop of a product/tool.
  • Gloves — Hand injuries are very common, mostly from chemicals, burns, electrical currents and dropped tools. Workers should have them on at all times in case of an accident to prevent burns, bruises, scrapes, electrical shock and even broken bones.
  • Earplugs — If you constantly work around loud machinery and/or noisy equipment, earplugs are a must. Leaving your ears exposed to continuously loud noises will cause hearing damage or hearing loss. Plugs may also help with tinnitus, which is the constant ringing of the ears.
  • Jackets — Always make sure to wear the proper jacket to prevent scrapes, burns, and bruises that could result from an accident with a machine or power tool. In addition, jackets are crucial if you work outside during the winter months when frostbite is a concern.
  • Vests — Wearing vests when working outside makes you visible to others who may not otherwise see you, thereby avoiding on-the-job injuries and death. For those who work at night, be sure to wear vests with reflective material. That way when a light shines on you, you can be seen. Reflective clothing approved by ANSI (American National Standards Institute) is highly recommended.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were 4,383 fatal work injuries in 2012 — most of them as a result of not wearing proper safety gear. Although injuries are down 25% since 2006, it is still imperative to wear the proper safety gear in the workplace. By wearing protective clothing, you are making a fashion statement, which says: “I choose to be safe.”

Tips to Properly Dispose of Barbecue Gas Grills Before They Are Recycled

With Memorial Day weekend a few days away, many people are replacing their old barbecue gas grills with new ones. Many parts of the grill can be recycled, including the gas tanks, but there are many safety factors to consider. Gershow Recycling says people must show great care in properly disposing of used propane gas tanks and other parts of the grill when bringing them in to be recycled.

With the health risks associated with the handling of propane tanks, states are cracking down on the illegal disposal of propane tanks. As a result, many people are turning to scrap metal recyclers to properly dispose of the barbecue grills.

When disposing of a barbecue gas grill, observe the following rules:

  • Dispose of the propane tanks first. The tanks must be “discharged,” or emptied, before they can be disposed of. Do not empty the tank by letting the gas escape through the valve; it is dangerous and bad for the environment. Many propane and BBQ grill retailers accept old tanks.
  • Never store propane tanks inside a building. It is not only dangerous, it is also illegal.
  • Once the tank has been disposed of, the rest of the grill can be recycled. Clean off any grease from the plastic and metal parts before recycling, as grease — like propane — can be flammable.
  • Burn off the rest of the charcoal bricks in the grill. This can be done by simply leaving the grill alight until all of the bricks are gone. When disposing of the coals, wait until they have cooled down. Close the cover to avoid exposure to the heat, which would lead to burns. You can let them cool overnight or, for a quicker solution, pour sand over them. When the risk of fire has passed, dispose of properly in a non-combustible container.
  • If you must dispose of the ashes before they are completely cold, place the ashes in heavy-duty aluminum foil and completely soak with cold water before placing them in a non-combustible container. Placing them in any other receptacle may cause a fire, especially if the receptacle contains flammable or combustible material.

“It is important that the gas tanks that are brought to Gershow Recycling are fully emptied,” said Elliot Gershowitz, vice president of Gershow Recycling. “The contents are under pressure and, if they are not properly discharged, can result in a fire, serious injury or death. We accept propane gas grills, but we ask that people properly discharge the tanks before bringing them to be recycled.”