Sharps waste is defined as being 'anything that has the potential to pierce, or has been used to pierce, the skin'. These instruments should always be put into the correct sharps bin.
If you’re unsure what this applies to, all the items below should be put into an appropriate sharps bin:
- Stitch cutters
- Glass ampoules
- Sharp instruments
- Shards of bone and teeth
- Razor blades
It's important that your sharps waste is disposed of in a dedicated sharps bin of a suitable size. We will provide you with the correct sharps bin(s) as part of your sharps waste contract. And one filled, from here we take it away for incineration.
To you, the producer of the sharps waste, the different bin colours and EWC code 18-01-01 indicates what type of waste goes into which bin. To us, the waste collector, these bin colours and EWC codes tell us exactly where the waste should go and how it should be disposed of.
Sharps Bins with an Orange Lid are for waste items that only contain blood, with no medical or pharmaceutical products or residue contaminant such as a used syringe which has taken a blood sample. Orange sharps bins can also be used for sharp instruments with no contaminant on them at all, but are in need of disposal, such as an unwrapped needle or scalpel.
Sharps Bins with a Yellow Lid are designed for waste that contains medical residue such as medically contaminated needles, syringes or bodies (including ones that are fully discharged).
Sharps Bins with a Purple Lid are for cytotoxic or cytostatic waste which refers to medicines (or active agents) which are used to treat cancer, immunosuppressants, anti-virals, or hormone based.
Sharps Bin Sizes
All of ours bins can come in a variety of sizes to suit the amount of waste you produce:
- 1 Litre
- 3.75 Litres
- 4 Litres
- 5 Litres
- 7 Litres
- 11.5 Litres
- 22 Litres
The Environmental Protection Act 1990 and The Waste and Contaminated Land (Northern Ireland) Order 1997 place a "Duty of Care" on anyone who produces, collects, treats and disposes of waste. This includes feminine hygiene, clinical, sharps, medicines, dental waste, confidential waste or other waste to be recycled
The purpose of a Duty of Care note is to document and record the transfer of waste, and to show that you’re complying with all the correct legislation and procedures. We always provide you with an annual Duty of Care certificate with your sharps waste collection.
With every waste collection that contains hazardous material you’ll receive a consignment note detailing the type of waste collected, its EWC code, the quantity, components, hazard code and container type.
Each time you will need to supply us with your hazardous waste producer registration number. If you do not have one, you will need to register with The Environment Agency annually (unless exempt) which is applicable only to those producing over 500kg. In this case, it's vital that you have the registration number. If not, we cannot take your waste away.
If you prefer, we can do this for you!