Safe disposal of used needles and syringes (sharps disposal)
Information about the safe disposal of used needles and syringes (Sharps Disposal).
In South Australia, the disposal of medical sharps (including used injecting equipment) in household waste and recycling bins is prohibited under section 18 of the Environment Protection (Waste to Resources) Policy 2010.
In addition, the Local Nuisance and Litter Control Act 2016, South Australia, came into operation on 1 July 2017. Under section 22 (5), class
The information below highlights sections of the current South Australian legislation that relate to the disposal of needles and syringes.
Section 18 – Disposal of medical sharps
(1) A person must not dispose of medical sharps by -
(a) depositing medical sharps in a receptacle provided by a council for collection by a kerbside waste collection service; or
(b) placing medical sharps for collection as a part of a kerbside waste collection service provided by a council.
Mandatory provision: Category D offence.
(2) In this clause -
medical sharp includes needles, hypodermic needles, syringes with needles or other surgical instruments that have been used in a domestic situation for medical purposes.
Commenced 1 July 2017:
Section 22 (5), class
(5) In this section, unless the contrary intention appears -
class A hazardous litter means domestic or commercial waste comprised of -
(b) material containing asbestos;
(c) any substance, material or thing of a kind prescribed by regulation;
(d) a combination of litter referred to in a preceding paragraph of this definition
and any other litter;
class B hazardous litter means -
(a) when disposed of onto land or into waters -
(i) live cigarettes or cigarette butts
(ii) used syringes;
(iii) waste glass (whether or not broken);
(iv) any substance, material or thing of a kind prescribed by regulation;
(v) a combination of litter referred to in a preceding paragraph of this
definition and general litter;
(a) for an offence involving the disposal of 50 litres or more of class B hazardous litter or general litter - $1 000;
(b) for an offence involving the disposal of up to 50 litres of class B hazardous litter - $500;
(c) for an offence involving the disposal of up to 50 litres of general litter - $210.