This Environmental Health & Safety guideline documentation is intended for researchers and laboratory personnel.
This guidance document provides instruction on segregation and disposal of metal sharps. Metal sharps include: needles, scalpels, razor blades and other metal blades. All metal sharps—regardless of whether they are contaminated or not, must be sent through EH&S for disposal. State laws regulate disposal of metal sharps to protect waste handlers from both physical and contamination hazards that they present. All metal sharps must be separated from other wastes and placed into puncture proof, non-leaking containers such as biohazard sharps containers (best option), rigid plastic containers, metal containers and glass containers (if no other containers are available). All containers must have a lid that seals tightly to the container and also protects from puncture hazards. For other puncture hazards such as broken glass and pipette tips, refer to the separate disposal guidance document titled “Segregation and Disposal of Broken Glass, Pipette Tips and other Plastic Puncture Hazards”.