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Needles, Syringes and Other Sharps

Do not put sharps in home garbage or recycling.

It is a health hazard and is against the law.

Sharps disposal options

  • Check with your pharmacy. Many stores that sell sharps containers accept the full containers for disposal.
  • Ask your health care provider if you can return used sharps to his/her office or clinic.
  • Dispose of sharps at the Recycling and Disposal Stations for no charge. See instructions below.
  • Public Health Center patients can dispose of sharps 24 hours a day in syringe drop boxes located outside public clinics. See Seattle/ King County Public Health Sharps Disposal Options for locations.
  • People who use illegal drugs can drop off sharps at a Seattle/ King County Public Health Needle Exchange.
  • Businesses that need to dispose of sharps should call the Public Health Seattle & King County at (206) 205-4394.

Recycling and Disposal Station instructions

  • Put your sharps in a sealed, labeled, rigid plastic container. Manufactured sharps containers are available at many pharmacies and drugstores.
  • There is a 1 gallon container limit per trip.
  • Your container will not be returned to you.
  • Ask the station attendant where to deposit your sharps container.
  • Do not put loose sharps in the garbage or recycling! It is a health hazard and is against the law.

More Information

Call the Seattle - King County Health Department, (206) 263-8899.

To report needles found on public property

If you find needles on public properties the Customer Service Bureau has more information on how to report them for proper disposal.

Related links

Recycling & Disposal Stations

Links to other sites

Sharps Disposal Options
King County guidelines for storage and containment of biomedical waste