• Silver may be found in significant concentrations in fixer solution. Silver is a toxic contaminant that can disturb the biological action of a sewage treatment plant and harm aquatic life such as fish and other organisms.
  • Some fixer solutions are corrosive and can burn skin and eyes.
  • Some individuals are allergic to sulphites in photoprocessing solutions.


  • Protect eyes from splashes and skin from direct contact.
  • Store solutions in plastic buckets or bottles. Keep containers tightly closed when not in use.
  • Clearly label containers with the contents.
  • Store materials in a secure area that is locked and out of reach of children.
  • Keep dark room ventilated when using photographic chemicals.

Management Options

  • Photographic waste liquids should NOT be poured down the drain if connected to a septic system.
  • In sewered areas, developer and rinse solutions may be poured down the drain.
  • Some local photo processing businesses may accept silver bearing fixer waste for recycling and management.
  • Take spent fixer solutions to a hazardous household waste collection or commercial hazardous waste facility.
  • Check the Yellow Pages or search online for private companies in Massachusetts that provide photographic waste recovery services.

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