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Understanding the Dry Cleaning Industry Steve Whittaker, Ph.D. Public Health Researcher Local Hazardous Waste Management Program Public Health – Seattle.

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Presentation on theme: "Understanding the Dry Cleaning Industry Steve Whittaker, Ph.D. Public Health Researcher Local Hazardous Waste Management Program Public Health – Seattle."— Presentation transcript:

1 Understanding the Dry Cleaning Industry Steve Whittaker, Ph.D. Public Health Researcher Local Hazardous Waste Management Program Public Health – Seattle & King County APWA Spring Conference April 5, 2012

2 LHWMP’s Dry Cleaning Survey King County shops ~ 200 dry clean on premises 64% response rate 84% Korean-owned Little regulatory attention or guidance Prefer information in Korean

3 LHWMP’s Dry Cleaning Survey 69% still using PCE machines. Only one-quarter believe there are any health problems associated with PCE. – Of these, most consider PCE to be only an irritant Machines are old – median age 10 years Parts becoming hard to find

4 Age of dry cleaning machines <1 Expected lifespan ?

5 King County, ppm PCE

6 King County, 2011 > 1000 ppm PCE

7 Misinformation is common Cultural and language barriers Incorrect information from vendors Little interaction with regulators Infrequent use of PPE Confusion about waste management & disposal


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