Sharps Disposal

On July 1, 2012, a Massachusetts law went into effect banning the disposal of medical sharps in household waste. It is now illegal to dispose of needles, syringes or lancets in the regular trash. Instead, you are required to take any sharps to a special facility for disposal, such as the Hingham Transfer Station.

Home Medical Waste

Medical "sharps" include hypodermic needles, syringes and lancets. They are typically used in the home to treat people and animals with diabetes and other chronic diseases such as allergies, arthritis, osteoporosis, multiple sclerosis, hepatitis B and HIV.

Disposal Methods

There are a variety of ways to safely dispose of used sharps:
  • At the Hingham Transfer Station - Sharps in secure containers may be safely disposed of in the universal waste section of the baler building.
  • The Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection provides guidance (PDF) about safe syringe disposal, or they may be reached at 617-292-5500.
  • Massachusetts Department of Public Health, at 617-624-6000.
  • provides information on proper storage and disposal of sharps.
Unwanted medications may be safely disposed of:
  • At Hingham's Household Waste section of the Transfer Station. The trash is taken to the SEMASS waste-to energy facility in Wareham, Massachusetts where it is burned.
  • The Hingham Police Station. For more information, please call 781-749-1212.
Do not dispose of unwanted medications down a drain or toilet.