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FW: Spent Cold Packs


What they are using is a product called KWIK-KOLD.  It is waterproof package
containing small white ammonium nitrate pellets surrounding a small
rupturable plastic bag filled with blue-dyed water. When the water and
pellets mix, the liquid becomes cold.  Since the ammonium nitrate goes into
solution to get the cold reaction, there is no way to reverse this reaction
so it can be reused.  Therefore, as far as I know, it is a one-time use
system.  I will check into the reusable freeze packs to see if this is
something they can use instead.

Thanks for your response.


-----Original Message-----
From: Catherine Zimmer [mailto:zimme053@umn.edu]
Sent: Wednesday, May 16, 2001 11:33 AM
To: 'ronald_a_del_mar@rl.gov'
Subject: Spent Cold Packs

Hi Ronald;
Are these cold packs actually spent?  E.g. are they like, capsules that are 
broken, get cold and are used and discarded?
I don't know of any reuse for these items.  I will send the query out to 
folks I'm connected with and see if they have any ideas.
One alternative I would suggest to the medical facility would be to use the 
blue, reusable, re-freezable "cool packs".  These can be reused or even 
returned to the manufacturer.

Catherine Zimmer, Chair
Hospitals for a Healthy Environment
Chemical Min and Waste Reduction Workgroups
MnTAP Healthcare Specialist
University of Minnesota
200 Oak Street SE, Suite 350
Minneapolis, MN   55455
fax 612/625-6814

Original Message:

We have a medical aid facility that has a waste stream of spent cold packs.
Here in Washington, these designate as dangerous waste due to a 40%
concentration of ammonium nitrate (LD50 toxicity).  Does anybody know if
there are any recycling opportunities for the ones that are spent (possibly
as a fertilizer ammendment?).  Any way to regenerate them?  Do any
manufacturers take them back? 


Ronald A. Del Mar
DynCorp Environmental Programs & Compliance
(509) 376-2186 (fax) 372-1694