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View Full Version : Safely deal with/clean up abandoned and crashed reef tank with zoanthids etc.


Starvin Marvin
06/08/2016, 03:20 PM
Hi,

I was evacuated from my city for 5 weeks due to an out of control wildfire.

I have now returned and my 100gal saltwater reef tank and my 2 smaller tanks are toast. 20% of the systems water evaporates from the 100gal tank, my sump return pump starved for water and the entire sump ceased functioning, therefore the heat cut out as well.

My Gyre pump is also now above the water line. I can see dead skunk shrimp (poor Mr. Tickles and Pinchy) on the bottom, nothing is moving, the water is cloudy and the top is coated with a nasty sludgy slime. It really stinks too.

About 1" of the highest peak of my live rock is exposed, looks like 3 or 4 zoanthid polyps are exposed. The rest is under water. (If you can still call it water).

The smaller tanks and way worse probably because the heat was on longer, they each lost 50-60% of their water. All life similarly destroyed. Way slimier too.

I am wondering if anyone has any references they can share or tips for "safe cleanup/disposal" of these tanks.

I have read about palytoxin and it doesn't seem good. I could add bleach and wait an hour, or whatever is recommended.

It's really horrible, I don't know even what kind of air filter mask cartridge to wear. I was thinking R95 Niosh...

The 100gal was a 1.5 year old established tank packed with corals, an anemone, a sea cucumber, an urchin, and had about 7 fish.

My Insurance Adjuster may or may not have good knowledge of this type of disaster. And I currently have no way to validate what they recommend so that's why I'm reaching out to you.

Thanks a lot


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vashawn
06/08/2016, 03:25 PM
dude use think rudder gloves and 3m mask u can get at HD or lowes.
what u dont want through out
thats it
And im sorry about the the tanks, etc. GL

Al
06/13/2016, 08:03 AM
First, sorry about what happened.

I guess I would have opened the windows, put on a pair of gloves, and put the rock in clean salt water. Some life might have survived even this, after all live rock during collection and transport is left semi dry for a few days and not everything dies on it. Then I would have emptied out the tanks and flushed the tank, sump, and plumbing with tap water. If I found rock was completely dead, I'd guess I'd give it the 10% bleach treatment.

What did you decide to do?

ecotanker
06/13/2016, 08:58 AM
Sorry to hear about your loss.

Remember to also wear googles for the eyes, if or when you clean the tanks.

2000se
06/14/2016, 11:43 AM
Bump. This is serious as to what to do with the old water and rock. I mean a huge brute tub with clean salt water to store all the rock with a heater and powerhead/ skimmer for a while. Let it rest. Turning to the tanks and water, what would be the issue with digging a fairly deep hole to pour the water in then cover over after the water dried? It would contain the toxins potential. Just not sure if the water/toxins would seep into the ground water or get locked into the soil?? I'm sure A LOT of people just pour their water change water down the drain. If they have zoas I'm sure the toxin is in that water too. I'm just not sure. I'd like to know the safest action as well.

Al
06/14/2016, 04:39 PM
I think it should be OK to just pour the aquarium water down the drain. The waste treatment plant should be able to deal with the water from a dead tank. If you're still worried adding bleach to the waste water first should denature any organics.

2000se
06/16/2016, 12:42 PM
I think it should be OK to just pour the aquarium water down the drain. The waste treatment plant should be able to deal with the water from a dead tank. If you're still worried adding bleach to the waste water first should denature any organics.


To be clear-are you saying that bleach detoxifies palytoxin?

2000se
06/16/2016, 12:52 PM
To be clear-are you saying that bleach detoxifies palytoxin?

To answer my own question- after visiting the CDC website , they have a whole section regarding palytoxin and that bleach does nullify it.

Al
06/16/2016, 04:02 PM
To answer my own question- after visiting the CDC website , they have a whole section regarding palytoxin and that bleach does nullify it.

Here's one of their documents:
https://www.cdc.gov/biosafety/publications/bmbl5/bmbl5_appendixi.pdf

I'm no chemist though, and I'm unsure of the concentration they are using.

2000se
06/16/2016, 07:15 PM
Here's one of their documents:
https://www.cdc.gov/biosafety/publications/bmbl5/bmbl5_appendixi.pdf

I'm no chemist though, and I'm unsure of the concentration they are using.

It's in this article:
http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm6431a4.htm

Starvin Marvin
06/17/2016, 08:11 PM
To answer my own question- after visiting the CDC website , they have a whole section regarding palytoxin and that bleach does nullify it.



Wow! Good to know thanks.


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Starvin Marvin
06/17/2016, 08:43 PM
It's in this article:

http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm6431a4.htm



Hey!

The spot I found in this document says this:

Palytoxin can be neutralized by soaking the coral for 30 minutes in a ≥0.1% household bleach solution (1 part 5%6% sodium hypochlorite [household bleach] to 10 parts water, prepared fresh) (reference #8)

So if there is still approx 70 gal of water in the tank, I wonder if simply pouring in household bleach in the amount of 1:10 (7 gallons) would do the trick?

Personally... That seems like a TON of bleach. We typically sanitize hot tubs with half a cup for 250 gallons if we run out of chlorine shock or pucks. It doesn't hang around long as it oxidizes off quickly in that form but it will keep the water safe.

Cleanup has not yet begun on these tanks. Will provide an update once a path forward is under way. For the time being, nobody is living in the home and anyone accessing it wears at minimum a pair of gloves, safety glasses, and a north half mask with P100 cartridges.

Here are a couple pics from recent days:

http://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20160618/f0083da3835072750d97bcdc48f40c42.jpg

http://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20160618/585b41d322c17dd454f97910deada590.jpg

http://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20160618/32e49743f8bbbacfc3d0b3a29b06a1a4.jpg

http://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20160618/adc9a792a6ac23b9ba4d22a260dc4f1f.jpg

Here are some more recent pics post crash:

http://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20160618/cefcf77ed5d5ded7d86ae96817451b21.jpg

http://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20160618/d0bfe4e84a76e2ffc98979daadc36d75.jpg

http://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20160618/6afd69ef87588ed8253704ca361cfb90.jpg

http://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20160618/e9c6a5d3e6a16a8b4852a8109ef7abdf.jpg

http://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20160618/c64eeb21159e8f8b5b4a2ff085dc9b0a.jpg

http://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20160618/8265fffb962bcac13a46029c2027b914.jpg

Appreciate all the ideas and feedback.



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Piper27
06/18/2016, 06:04 AM
I would dump the water outside. Doubtful any water would make it anywhere where it would cause any harm. You had a good tank, I hope you get moved back in soon.

2000se
06/18/2016, 07:42 AM
I think that recommendation from the cdc is to break down the palytoxin, not to simply sanitize. I mean it will certainly sanitize but I think the major concern was the palytoxin itself.

FattyK21
06/23/2016, 07:19 PM
Damn dude i am so sorry
I wouldn't even know where to begin :(