All needles should be treated as if they carry disease. They can injure people, spread germs, damage recycling equipment, and require people to be tested for years for HIV and Hepatitis if they are accidentally stuck. State law makes it illegal to dispose of sharps in the trash, recycling bin, or composting bin. Sharps should only be disposed of in approved disposal containers.
Mail-back Program for Disposal
Republic Services provides residents with a safe and convenient way to dispose of approved medical sharps waste through a Sharps Mail-back program.
After customers place their container orders from the Republic Services Sharps website, their order is shipped in 1 to 2 business days complete with all of the necessary return shipping, packaging, and labeling. Pricing is all inclusive, so there is no need to pay additional tax or shipping costs to receive or to return their containers.
Guide to Sharps Disposal
To learn more about how to properly dispose of sharps, other Sharps Mail-back programs, and for a list of the 12 County of San Bernardino Household Hazardous Waste (HHW) Collection Facilities that accepts sharps view this Guide to Sharps Disposal (PDF).
Sharps and Medication Disposal Directory
To locate a sharps and medications disposal facility visit the CalRecycle website.
For updated information on the proper disposal of sharps, call 1 (909) 382-5401.
Other Ways to Dispose of Sharps
Effective July 1, 2021 San Bernardino County residents can safely dispose of their used sharps in containers that they have created themselves at participating HHW locations.
The following are general guidelines for creating your own sharps disposal container:
- Containers must be 2 gallons or smaller made from heavy-duty plastic (Ex. Detergent bottles, bleach bottles). These containers must have the original screw-top that is also puncture resistant.
- Containers shall be puncture resistant and safe to transport which means that milk containers, water bottles, metal cans and glass containers are unapproved for use.
- Containers should not be leaking and the lid must be secured with tape.
- Two (2) biohazardous waste labels are required, one on front and one on back of the container. Residents can print their own biohazardous waste labels (PDF) or obtain them at participating HHW locations.
- Only needles, lancets and syringes shall be placed inside containers (no liquids, medications, gauze, etc.).
- Containers should be ¾ full.
View this guide (PDF) to learn more about how to properly create your own sharps disposal container.