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Public Works

1100 Vance Street

(336) 349-1070

Hours: 7:00 a.m. - 3:30 p.m. 

2023 Annual Performance Report

The Reidsville Public Works Department oversees a variety of services provided by the City -- from water and sewer issues to snow removal and trash pickup. The City's Public Works Director Joshua Beck supervises and coordinates the department's five operational divisions: Garage, Public Services, Solid Waste Management, Wastewater and Water Treatment Plants.

Think Before You Flush!

Non-flushable products can harm your home's plumbing and wreak havoc on the City's wastewater treatment facilities. The following are NOT flushable and should be placed in your garbage cans: baby wipes, paper towels, tissues, disinfecting wipes and feminine products. Please be mindful of what is flushed as we all want to be environmentally friendly and not add to the public health risk during the COVID-19 pandemic. Thank you.

Public Services Division

If you want to report a pothole or a water leak, you need to call the Public Services Division. Public Services is responsible for all 80-plus miles of local City streets as well as the storm sewer collection system, water distribution and sewage collection system. Employees can be seen around the City repairing local traffic signals or replacing traffic signs, public street snow removal, replacing sidewalks and curbs and repairing or replacing fire hydrants. Loose leaf pickup is handled by this division, along with operation of the City-owned Greenview Cemetery and maintenance of the City's network of parks, ballfields and greenways. The mowing season for Greenview Cemetery is March-October.

Loose Leaf Pickup

Loose leaf pickup starts each year in November and continues on until the first of January. Loose leaves must be raked to the curb for pickup, which is done on a weekly basis. Please place loose leaves in your yard, near the curb, or edge of pavement (away from storm drains or parked cars). Do not place leaves in the traveled portion of the roadway. The schedule will vary when volume is extremely heavy and for holidays. Sticks, brush, and any other foreign objects must be removed from your loose leaves as this delays the collection process and can severely damage our collection equipment. Piles found to contain these objects will not be collected until cleared of debris. Residents are encouraged to retain leaves on their property and compost when possible.

Solid Waste Management

A City is often judged by its appearance. The Solid Waste Management division helps to keep that appearance up. The division is headed by Sanitation Superintendent Edward Shelton, and provides weekly automated curbside residential garbage pickup. Bulk trash items, such as boxes, bags, discarded furniture, etc., are collected weekly in residential areas as is brush and yard waste. We are committed to a "green" future and have had a recycling program since the early '90s. Previously, voluntary curbside recycling was made available by Waste Management for City residents but with the company's decision in 2019 to no longer offer the service inside the City limits, the City negotiated with Foothill Waste Solutions (call 336-871-4055) to provide voluntary curbside recycling. Check out the City's Drop-Off Center information below for more on curbside recycling.

Here is the new Guide to Solid Waste Collection in the City of Reidsville.

From time to time, the City holds a Residential Household Hazardous Waste Collection Event. None are currently scheduled.


This is a support division for all other departments in the City and has the responsibility of keeping the City's fleet of diverse equipment operating effectively and economically. 

Engineering Division
The City of Reidsville's Engineering Division is overseen by Steve Moran, City Engineer, and is located on the second floor of City Hall, 230 W. Morehead Street.
Wastewater Treatment Plant

Located at 407 Broad Street, the City of Reidsville's Wastewater Treatment Plant is operated by the City of Reidsville and overseen currently by Plant Superintendent Mourice Brothers. It has a daily treatment capacity of 7.5 million gallons and is dedicated to the quality of North Carolina's water resources. The plant's personnel are committed to public education and welcome local teachers to schedule tours of the plant for their students.

Water Treatment Plant

The Water Treatment Plant on Reid Lake Road is also operated by the City and has a capacity of 9 million gallons.  The City obtains its raw water from the 720-acre Lake Reidsville, which is also used as a recreational facility operated by the Reidsville Recreation Department.  The plant is overseen by Plant Superintendent Blake Slaughter.


2022 Water Quality Report

Each year the City of Reidsville releases a Water Quality Report, which is available online or in hard copy format for its residents. 
2022 Water Quality Report

Materials Drop-off Center

Drop off Center

Reidsville City Residents ONLY!

709 Marcellus Street

(336) 349-1070

LATEST UPDATE AS OF DECEMBER 15, 2023: The City's Transfer Station and Material Drop-Off Center's regular operating hours are on weekdays from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. We are closed on Saturdays and Sundays, as well as all city-observed holidays. Citizens can still take advantage of the Rockingham County Landfill at 281 Shuff Rd in Madison, which is open Monday through Friday from 7:30 a.m. until 4:15 p.m., and Saturdays from 7:30 a.m. until 12:30 p.m. For more information about the landfill and their rules, please visit their website (Rockingham County Landfill Website).

Please deposit materials in the proper containers as marked and do not leave any items that do not have a designated container.  We are counting on you to help us keep this area clean.

Televisions & Computer Equipment

In July of 2010, the State of North Carolina banned televisions and computer equipment from being disposed in landfills due to the containment of toxic materials. Computer equipment includes the following: computers (laptop and desktop), monitors, printers & scanners. As an additional service since 2012, City residents may bring these items to the Reidsville Material Drop-Off Center during normal business hours.

In addition, many retailers and electronics manufacturers operate their own recycling programs and can be contacted individually for more information.

Construction & Remodeling Waste (Building Materials): This self-service container is intended for small scale remodeling jobs performed by the residents of the property, NOT contractors or commercial builders. The following items are NOT ALLOWED (due to landfill restrictions):

  • No liquids, paints or fluids of any kind

  • No pressure cylinders (gas grill) or canisters

  • No motors, engines or car parts

  • No hazardous wastes or filters

  • No metal objects

  • No batteries

  • No tires

  • No masonry

  • No TVs or computers

  • No cardboard

  • No yard waste

  • No asbestos

  • No earth or dirt

  • No furniture or carpet

Motor Oil:  Used motor oil can be recycled and should never be dumped down the storm drain, which pollutes our water.  Put the oil in clean plastic containers for easy pouring into the waste oil tank at the Reidsville Material Drop-Off Center.


Used Cooking Oil: The City freely accepts used cooking oil in a designated green container at the Reidsville Material Drop-Off Center. Used Cooking oil should never be poured down the drain.


If you haven't signed up for voluntary curbside recycling, you still can by contacting Foothill directly at (336) 871-4055.

Trash Pickup

Trash Pickup

If you're new to the City, you might be wondering how do you get residential solid waste service?

When you sign up at Reidsville City Hall, 230 W. Morehead Street, for water and sewer service, your garbage collection will be activated at the same time. You will be put on the weekly rotation schedule depending on where your residence is located. You can call (336) 349-1070 to find out which day of the week service is provided to your area.

If you do not have a City-issued 95-gallon garbage cart, you can contact Public Works at 336-349-1070.

Our fees for bringing new cans is currently $61.50/cart. The current monthly tipping fee per cart is $6.64. There is a two cart maximum per residence. Prices are subject to change.

Preparation of refuse for collection:

  1. Brush, leaves, and grass cuttings shall be picked up at the curbside.

  2. Limbs, up to six (6) inches in diameter, shall be cut no more than six-foot lengths, and placed at the curb.

  3. Limbs and bundles shall not weigh more than fifty (50) pounds.

  4. Loose grass and leaves shall be put into a closed container.

  5. Leaves may be placed loose at the curb at times specified by the superintendent of streets and lines.


Excerpt from Sec. 10-124. - Preparation of refuse for collection generally. Reidsville Code of Ordinances


Regarding large trash pickup:

  1. All bulky trash is subject to the approval of the superintendent of the solid waste management division before it is picked up.

  2. Large trash pickup to residential properties shall be limited to five (5) cubic yards per week. Additional loads within this period shall be subject to a fee of forty dollars ($40.00) per hour or any portion thereof.


Sec. 10-127. - Large trash pickup. Reidsville Code of Ordinances

Curbside Recycling

As of June 2019, voluntary curbside recycling is no longer offered in the City of Reidsville by Waste Management. However, the City of Reidsville negotiated with Foothill Waste Solutions to provide curbside recycling to Reidsville City residents once the 400-subscriber mark is reached. Learn more about it in the attached press release. Interested City residents can call Foothill directly at (336) 871-4055. You can express your interest in the program by leaving your name, address and telephone number. Foothill will contact you about signing up. Items Foothill Accepts for Recycling

Holiday Schedule

Each year, the City of Reidsville Public Works Department publishes an annual schedule for garbage pickup around the holidays. The City recognizes nine holidays, and the garbage routes and Material Drop-Off Center hours adjust accordingly.  Please review the attached schedule and place your garbage out on the curb accordingly. If you have any questions, you can contact Edward Shelton, Solid Waste Superintendent, at (336) 349-1074 or email him at

2023 City of Reidsville Sesquicentennial & Garbage Collection Schedule

2024 Holiday Garbage Collection Schedule


Industrial Pre-Treatment Program

The Pretreatment Program was established to control the discharges of industrial users into its sewer system.  The Environmental Protection Agency first issued pretreatment regulations in 1978.  The State of North Carolina identified a need for establishing pretreatment programs in 1980.  The four main objectives were and still are:

  • To prevent interference with the Wastewater Treatment Facility's operations.

  • To prevent pollutant pass-through to the Wastewater Treatment Facility's receiving stream.     

  • To prevent sludge contamination.

  • To prevent worker exposure


Pretreatment Staff compile lists of potential industries and then survey, inspect and analyze the discharges of these industries.  The data from all the tests are analyzed and compiled.  Specific industries as defined by NCAC 2H .0903(34) called significant industrial users must be permitted under the Pretreatment Program. A Significant Industrial User is defined by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as an industrial user that discharges process wastewater into a publicly owned treatment works (POTW) and meets at least one of the following: 

  1. All industrial users subject to Categorical Pretreatment Standards under the Code of Federal Regulations - Title 40 (40 CFR) Part 403.6, and CFR Title 40 Chapter 1, Subchapter  N - Effluent Guidelines and Standards; and

  2. Any other industrial user that:

  • discharges an average of 25,000 gallons per day or more of process wastewater to the POTW (excluding sanitary, non-contact cooling and boiler blowdown wastewater); or

  • contributes a process wastestream which makes up 5 percent or more of any design capacity of the POTW treatment plant; or

  •  is designated as such by the City of Reidsville Industrial Pretreatment Division on the basis that the industrial user has a reasonable potential for adversely affecting the POTW's operation or for violating any pretreatment standard or requirement.


If an industry is discharging specific pollutants into the collection system, contributes a specific loading to the POTW treatment plant, has reasonable potential for adversely affecting the POTW treatment plant operation or contributes large amounts of water, steps are taken to permit the industry. 

For Additional information regarding regulations and permitting please visit:



Reidsville City Hall
230 W. Morehead Street
Reidsville, NC  27320
(336) 349-1065 
(336) 347-2355 (fax)
Hours:  8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

The Engineering Division, as part of the Public Works Department, works closely with its fellow divisions and the Community Development Department to provide design and inspection services for City improvements. The Engineering Division is led by Steve Moran, City Engineer, and also includes the Civil Engineer.

The Division designs new water mains, sewer mains, roadways, greenways, storm water systems, and erosion control plans for City improvement projects.   Other responsibilities include:  

  • Stormwater Ordinance implementation

  • Processing public petitions for water and/or sewer line extensions, installation of curb & gutter and street improvements

  • Review and approval of Driveway Permit Application on City-maintained streets

  • Review and approval of Street rights-of-way encroachment by utility companies and contractors

Stormwater Information


Driveway Permit Application
Right-of-way Encroachment Permit Application


Engineering Standards and Specifications

The following documents can be found in our Document Center by click on the Engineering Category. 

Standard Water Details

  • Detail 101(1 of 3) House Service Connection And Hydrant-Sectional View

  • Detail 101 (3 of 3) House Service Connection Setting Detail-Plan View

  • Detail 102 Water Valve Box & Extension

  • Detail 106 Concrete Thrust Blocks For Horizontal Water Pipe Bends

  • Detail 107 (1 of 2) Pavement Repair For Pipe/Utility Placed Under Existing Pavement

  • Detail 107 (2 of 2) Pavement Repair For Pipe/Utility Placed Under Existing Asphalt Driveways

  • Detail 108 (1 of 2) Water Line Blow-Off-Plan View

  • Detail 108 (2 of 2) Water Line Blow-Off-Sectional View

  • Detail 110 Vertical Bend Anchors

  • Detail 111 Vertical Bend Offset  Anchors

  • Detail 116 Air Relief Valve With Assembly In Manhole

  • Detail 117 Anti-Seep Pipe Collar

  • Detail 118 Deadman Thrust Restraint With Mass Weight Blocking

  • Detail 119 (1 of 2) Blow Off For 4', 6' & 8' Pipe Lengths With Retaining Gland

  • Detail 119 (2 of 2) Blow Off For 4', 6' & 8' Pipe Lengths With Vertical Offset 

  • Detail 106 A Water Systems 6" And Larger Dead End Thrust Blocking

  • Detail 120 Water Systems Vaults


Standard Sewer Details

  • Detail 101 Sewer Service House Connection

  • Detail 200 (1 of 2) 4' ID & 5' ID Eccentric Precast Manhole With Expanded Base

  • Detail 200 (2 of 2) 4' ID & 5' ID Eccentric Precast Bottomless Manhole Over Existing Sewer

  • Detail 202 Exterior Drop Sanitary Sewer Connection Manhole

  • Detail 203 Interior Drop Sanitary Sewer Connection For Existing Manhole

  • Detail 205A Manhole Ring & Cover

  • Detail 205B Watertight Manhole Ring & Cover

  • Detail 206 Manhole Step For Precast Concrete Manhole

  • Detail 207 Trench Beddings For Circular Pipe

  • Detail 208 Bedding For Concrete Pipe

  • Detail 209 6' ID Eccentric Precast Manhole With Monolithic Bottom

  • Detail 210 Concrete Pipe Plug

  • Detail 211 Air Relief Valve With Assembly In Manhole

  • Detail 212 Eccentric Precast Vented Manhole With Expanded Base

  • Detail 219 Anti-Seep Pipe Collar

  • Detail 220 Aerial Crossing Concrete Pipe Pier

  • Detail 224 Load Bearing Sewer Cleanout Assembly

  • Detail 225 Aerial Pipeline Trespass Guard

  • Multi-Building Sanitary Sewer Arrangements

  • City Standard Water and Sewer Specifications

Standard Erosion Control Details

  • Detail 213 (1 of 2) Temporary Creek Crossing

  • Detail 213 (2 of 2) Temporary Creek Crossing

  • Detail 214 Permanent Creek Stabilization With Creek Crossing

  • Detail 215 Temporary Stone Check Dam

  • Detail 216 (1 of 3) Temporary Silt Fence

  • Detail 216 (2 of 3) Temporary Slit Fence Non-Erosive Outlet with Stone

  • Detail 216 (3 of 3) Temporary Silt Fence Non-Erosive Outlet With Terra Tubes

  • Detail 217 Temporary Construction Entrance

  • Detail 218 Temporary Earth Berm

  • Detail 221A Rock Pipe Inlet Protection

  • Detail 221B (1 of 2) Wattle Pipe Inlet Protection

  • Detail 221B (2 of 2) Wattle Pipe Inlet Protection Maintenance

  • Detail 222 Water Bar Diversion

  • Detail 223  (1 of 2) Wattle with Polyacrylamide

  • Detail 223 (2 of 2) Wattle with Polyacrylamide Installation


Land Development Storm Drainage

  • Section IV Land Development Specification Storm Drainage

Public Education

Public Education

Backflow Cross Connection
The City of Reidsville is committed to providing our customers with safe, high quality drinking water. In our effort to do this, the City Council adopted a Backflow and Cross Connection Ordinance to ensure the protection of our community’s water system.  The Ordinance requires:

  • Commercial and Industrial water customers to have an approved RPZ or appropriate backflow prevention assembly installed.

  • Residential water customers with irrigation systems are also required to have an approved assembly installed.


Backflow Prevention assemblies are required by the Federal Environmental Protection Agency and the State of North Carolina to safeguard water systems. Please click on the following links to learn more about backflow cross connect prevention. 

Backflow Cross Connection Ordinance

Storm Drains


NC Certified BFCC Testers


All backflow prevention assembly testers that would like to be added to our certified testers’ list must adhere to the following requirements:

  • Testers: As required by the City of Reidsville all backflow prevention assembly testers must be certified in the State of North Carolina to be qualified to inspect and test assemblies. In addition, testers must know and observe general safety procedures for personal safety, confined spaces, electrical hazards, etc.

  • Equipment: Properly calibrated equipment is essential to ensure accurate test data. Gauges should be checked for accuracy at least once a year and re-calibrated as necessary. 

  • Maintenance and Repair: Only manufacturers’ replacement parts should be used for repairs. Immediately following repair, maintenance or replacement, the backflow assembly must be retested. A copy of our test report form is enclosed. All commercial backflow preventers are required to be tested yearly and all residential backflow preventers are required to be tested every two years.

Please submit a copy of your NC Backflow Prevention Testing Certificate, a copy of Calibration Certificate for test kit along with your contact information by email to: or by mail to:

City of Reidsville Public Works

1100 Vance St, Reidsville, NC 27320

List of Approved Testers (Revised 12/28/2023)

Test Form (PDF)

Test Form (Word)

4th Grade Annual Water Festival

Since 2015, Public Works has an annual water festival for over 100 local fourth graders. The event is held in April at Lake Reidsville. The expertise and knowledge shared by the volunteers consist of water quality and conservation, storm water and stream habitat, the Haw River watershed, Fats, Oils and Grease, wastewater, water safety and water rescue. For more information, please contact the BFCC/FOG Coordinator at (336) 349-1070 or by email: The Coordinator is available for local educational presentations.

Fats, Oils & Grease Program

In an effort to comply with recent State regulations, the City of Reidsville Public Works Department has developed a F.O.G. (Fats, Oil and Grease) program. The program’s main goal is to prevent the accumulation of cooking grease in the sanitary sewer system.  The City currently has over 60 food service establishments participating in this program.  The purpose of the program is to enable the City to comply with applicable federal/state laws and to aid in the prevention of sanitary sewer overflows and/or blockages.

A leading cause of sewer blockages across North Carolina is the accumulation of fats, oils and grease (FOG) in household and commercial kitchens where large amounts of fats, oils and grease are produced. These by-products of cooking are not good for the sanitary sewer system. Over time they begin to stick to the sides of the sewer lines and build up, eventually causing a backup. The blockages cause sanitary sewer overflows into local waterways and backups into nearby homes and businesses. The maintenance cost associated with the blockages is passed along to all sewer customers. This additional cost would be unnecessary if the problem did not exist. Clearly, the prevention  of grease entering into our sanitary sewers is the key to solving this problem. Increasing public awareness of the importance of routine maintenance and servicing of grease interceptors (traps) will be a crucial aspect of our program and will play a large role in enabling us to provide services for our community in a safe, cost-effective manner.

City of Reidsville Fats, Oils & Grease Ordinance
Best Management Practices
FOG Enforcement Response Plan

Residential Tips


Food Service Establishment Information

Local food preparation establishments can keep grease out of their plumbing system and the City's sewer system by following the steps listed below.

Practice Dry Cleanup

Workers should be strongly encouraged to use dry cleanup methods to remove fats, oils, and grease from surfaces before washing with water. Remove food waste from cooking surfaces and utensils by scraping, wiping or sweeping rather than washing with water. Use rubber scrapers to remove fats, oils and grease from cookware and serving surfaces. Use food grade paper to soak up oil and grease under fryer baskets. Use paper towels to wipe down work areas. Disposal and recycling containers should be placed in easy reach of kitchen employees.

Install a Grease Interceptor or Grease Trap

New food preparation establishments are required to install an appropriately sized "grease retention unit" as required by the International Plumbing Code. However, existing facilities that do not have a grease retention unit and that have frequent problems with grease backups and blockages may want to consider installing such a unit.

A grease retention unit is a chamber designed for wastewater to pass through and allow free or emulsified oil to float to the top for retention as the remainder of the effluent passes through. There are two types of grease retention units: grease interceptors and grease traps.

Maintain your grease retention unit

It is important to establish a regular maintenance schedule to ensure that grease accumulation does not hinder the operation of the device. The Water Resources Department advocates the use of the "25 percent rule" when determining grease retention unit maintenance intervals. A grease retention unit will not meet performance standards once the accumulation of floatable F.O.G. material and settled solids has reached a depth equal to or greater than 25 percent of the total operating depth of the grease retention unit. In fact, a grease interceptor's performance severely declines once these accumulations exceed 15 percent of the total liquid depth. As a guideline, food preparation establishment owners/operators should conservatively set their cleaning frequency such that accumulations do not exceed 20 percent of the total liquid depth of the grease interceptor.

Notification of Change in Ownership or Closure of a Food Service Establishment

A change in ownership of a Food Service Establishment shall be reported to the F.O.G Coordinator in writing to 1100 Vance St., Reidsville, NC 27320 within 10 days prior of the ownership change.

Any Food Service Establishment that goes out of business shall report such closure to the F.O.G. Coordinator in writing within 30 days prior of closure and shall ensure that any grease trap and/or interceptor shall be cleaned/pumped before the building is vacated.

Mercury Reduction Program



Mercury is a naturally occurring element that is found in air, water and soil. It exists in several forms: elemental or metallic mercury, inorganic mercury compounds, and organic mercury compounds. Mercury is an element in the Earth’s crust. Humans cannot create or destroy mercury. Pure mercury is a liquid metal, sometimes referred to as quicksilver that volatizes readily. It has traditionally been used to make products like thermometers, switches, and some light bulbs.

The North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources, Division of Water Quality (DENR), has issued a statewide total maximum daily load (TMDL) for mercury. The ultimate goal of the TMDL is to ensure safe levels of mercury in fish throughout North Carolina for human consumption. The City of Reidsville has developed a Mercury Minimization Plan and will evaluate available information to assess the potential for non-domestic users of the sewer system to contribute mercury to the system. In an effort to minimize mercury the City will survey and evaluate common sources of mercury.

Mercury’s impact on the Environment

Mercury in the air may settle into water bodies and affect water quality. This airborne mercury can fall to the ground in raindrops, in dust, or simply due to gravity (known as “air deposition”). After the mercury falls, it can end up in streams, lakes, or estuaries, where it can be transferred to methylmercury through microbial activity. Methylmercury accumulates in fish at levels that may harm the fish and the other animals that eat them. The amount of methylmercury in fish in different waterbodies is a function of a number of factors, including the amount of mercury deposited from the atmosphere, local non-air releases of mercury, naturally occurring mercury in soils, the physical, biological, and chemical properties of different waterbodies and the age, size and types of food the fish eats.

Mercury’s impact on your Health

Mercury exposure at high levels can harm the brain, heart, kidneys, lungs, and immune system of people of all ages. Research shows that most people’s fish consumption does not cause health concerns. However, it has been demonstrated that high levels of methylmercury in the bloodstream of unborn babies and young children may harm the developing nervous system, making the child less able to think and learn.

Mercury Disposal Prohibitions

The state of North Carolina prohibits the disposal of hazardous waste, into municipal solid waste landfills (15A NCAC 13B.1626). Waste amalgam caught in the traps and screens of the plumbing, as well as other scraps of amalgam from the dental office, must be shipped to a properly permitted facility. Amalgam in wastewater is regulated either by the Sewer Use Ordinance of the local wastewater authority for dischargers to the sewer systems or by the local health department for dischargers to a septic tank. The sewer discharge limit for all users for mercury recommended in the N.C. Sewer Use Ordinance template is 0.0003 mg/l. Local limits may differ. Dischargers to a septic tank are prohibited from discharging hazardous waste and form contaminating groundwater at the compliance boundary.

Mercury in the Household /Products That May Contain Mercury

  • thermometers (looks like a silvery liquid)

  • thermostats

  • blood-pressure cuffs

  • barometers

  • fluorescent and high-intensity discharge (HID) lamps

  • mercurochrome

  • auto switches

  • float switches

  • button-cell batteries

  • old latex paint (pre-1990)

  • some oil-based paints

  • old alkaline batteries (pre-1996)

  • old light-up tennis shoes (pre-1997 LA gear)

  • chemistry sets

  • old fungicides for seeds and turf

  • dental amalgam

  • some imported jewelry (glass ampules with silver liquid)

  • weight/counterweight in grandfather clocks


Mercury Exposure & Symptoms of Mercury Poisoning

  • Exposure to methylmercury can result in impairment of peripheral vision, lack of coordination in movement, speech impairment and muscle weakness.

  • Exposure to elemental mercury can lead to mood swings, headache, irritability, nervousness, insomnia and neuromuscular changes. Higher exposure can also cause kidney failure or lung failure and eventually lead to death.

  • Exposure to inorganic mercury can cause skin rashes, loss of memory, mental disturbances, and dermatitis and muscle weakness. Exposure to organic mercury can also lead to same effects, but organic mercury is more readily absorbed by the body, and hence the ill effects are relatively less.


Mercury Poisoning Treatment

If the person has inhaled mercury in significant amount, he should be put on emergency respiratory support to avoid further damage to the lungs. In case of ingestion of caustic inorganic mercury, making the individual vomit will only lead to further exposure of the tissues to the caustic toxin and hence should be strictly avoided. The right method to treat this case would be to remove the source of poisoning. This should be only executed by an experienced medical professional. In case of acute organic forms of mercury the treatment need not be as aggressive as in case of inorganic forms. It can be treated by using a charcoal or laxative to remove the source. If the person has ingested elemental mercury; a laxative can be used to remove the elemental mercury. A more aggressive method has to be chosen if the intestinal tract is damaged.

Mercury Spills/Cleanup Instructions

  1. Put on rubber, nitrile or latex gloves.

  2. If there are any broken pieces of glass or sharp objects, pick them up with care. Place all broken objects on a paper towel. Fold the paper towel and place in a zip lock bag.

  3. Locate visible mercury beads. Use a squeegee or cardboard to gather mercury beads.

  4. Use the eyedropper to collect or draw up the mercury beads. Slowly and carefully squeeze mercury onto a damp paper towel. Make sure to label the bag as directed by your local health or fire department.

  5. After you remove larger beads, put shaving cream on a small paint brush and gently "dot" the affected area to pick up smaller hard-to-see beads. Alternatively, use sticky tape, such as duct tape, to pick up any remaining small glass fragments. Place the paint brush or duct tape in a zip lock bag and secure. Make sure to label the bag as directed by your local health or fire department.

  6. Contact your local health department, municipal waste authority or your local fire department for proper disposal in accordance with local, state and federal laws. Remember to keep the area well ventilated to the outside (i.e. windows open and fans in exterior windows running) for at least 24 hours after your successful cleanup. Continue to keep pets and children out of cleanup area. If sickness occurs, seek medical attention immediately.


Recycling Locations:

Residential: Contact your local Lowe’s Home Improvement


  • Salvage America, Greensboro, NC (336) 272-3820   

  • Southern Logistics  Greensboro, NC (336) 662-0292

  • Waste Industries, Greensboro, NC  (336) 668-3712

  • Garco, Asheboro, NC (336) 683-0911


Website Information:


General Information:

Ralph Potter, City of Reidsville

Pretreatment (336) 349-2310 

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