Changing procedures in order to safely dispose of hazardous chemicals
Bush describes how Hickory Springs, and other manufacturing plants, dealt with chemicals before regulations were implemented to control the use of hazardous materials. According to Bush, what seems like "common sense" now in terms of environment and safety was not a factor. With growing awareness of chemical hazards and their environmental implications, however, Hickory Springs began to spend more time and resources in order to properly dispose of chemicals.
Citing this Excerpt
Oral History Interview with Bobby Wesley Bush, Jr., June 21, 2000. Interview I-0088. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007) in the Southern Oral History Program Collection, Southern Historical Collection, Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Full Text of the Excerpt
- KATHLEEN KEARNS:
A couple of people had mentioned in interviews comments along the lines,
"In the old days, we were a whole lot more casual about these
things." But I just wanted to kind of get a fix on the time and
specifics a little bit on that.
- BOBBY BUSH:
Yes, we just didn't know any better. What today seems like common sense
in handling chemicals, back then it wasn't that it was being ignored or
that we were intentionally doing anything. I'm really speaking as an
industry, because we've all gotten our wrist slapped from time to time
for things we did back before there were regulations. You used to could
take drums of chemicals and if they were scrap chemicals, clean it,
flush the material, you could bury them. The heck with them. Nowadays
you wouldn't even consider that issue. We spend a lot of money on
destroying spent chemicals through incineration. They actually use a lot
of them to burn and generate fuel, generate electricity.