MAKING VEHICULAR WASTE NON-HAZARDOUS
WHAT IS ELV DEPOLLUTION?
stages of depollution
ELVs are categorised as hazardous waste until chemicals, substances, materials and components that pose a risk to human and environmental health, are removed. This process is called ELV depollution and must be carried out in accordance with the requirements of strict ELV Regulations at Authorised Treatment Facilities (ATFs). There are different stages to depollution.
The SLI (starting, lighting, ignition) battery is removed first to prevent the risk of electrical discharge and fuel ignition before the fuel tank has been emptied. Vehicles powered by Liquid Petroleum Gas (LPG) must have the gas recovered and the tank removed prior to depolluting the rest of the vehicle, due to its hazardous nature. The ELV Directive requires that all pyrotechnic devices, such as airbags and seat belt pre-tensioners, to either be safely neutralised or removed to eliminate the risk of explosion.
All of the car’s fuel, oils, coolants, anti-freeze, hydraulic and any other hazardous liquids must be removed and kept in separate containers in bunded storage areas prior to specialist recovery or disposal. This also includes the recovery of any air conditioning refrigerant gases, brake/clutch fluid and oil from within shock absorbers and suspension components. These fluids can contaminate the soil and water supply, or pollute the air if not removed and stored correctly.
Catalytic Converter theft is on the increase in the UK, as rising prices of precious metals mean that they are a popular target for organised crime. Platinum, Rhodium, and Palladium can all be extracted from the converter and used as a raw material in many different products, including medicine, dentistry, electronics, jewellery, and, yes, more catalytic converters! The converter's residual value can actually offset the cost of depolluting the entire vehicle...