Texas Tech University

Sharps Waste Management

Sharps are any metal object / device used to puncture or cut. Examples include any type of injection device and whatever is attached to it, razors, X-Acto knives, pointed scissors, scalpels, etc. Sharps must be disposed of in an appropriate sharps container. Chemical and BSL1 work areas may use and leak-proof, puncture-resistant plastic container (e.g., a rinsed laundry detergent container) labeled as "Sharps".

Dispose of sharps immediately after use. Locate sharps containers in the immediate work area to prevent traveling across the work area for disposal. Do not overfill containers. Most marked containers have a "Full" line. Submit a Biological Waste Request for EHS pick up. Containers must be completely secured prior to pick up.



  • Never recap a needle so as to prevent accidental sticks.
  • Use disposable sharps to avoid cleaning sharps or replacing blades.
  • Needle caps and blunted needles are not sharps waste and can be thrown in the regular trash can to save space in your sharps container. Blunted needles can be placed into a box or other containers prior to disposal into the regular trash can for an added layer of protection.
  • Pipet tips used for chemical transfers are not biological waste nor sharps waste; they can be collected and thrown in the regular trash.

Sharps Waste Resources

Sharps Use & Disposal SOP

Biological Waste Pick Up Request