Safe Disposal of Home Sharps

sharps container

California law prohibits the disposal of sharps waste, including needles, syringes and lancets, in the regular trash. Sharps waste poses a risk to trash collectors who may accidentally get stuck by a needle, syringe or lancet and be exposed to a disease.  Your children, pets, housekeepers, and janitors may also be at risk of a needle stick if needles are improperly stored or disposed.  

Click to watch "Drive Up, Drop Off" (Household Sharps Disposal Locations)


Used sharps may:

  • injure people
  • spread germs
  • spread serious disease like HIV/AIDS, hepatitis, and tetanus

Sharps should not be:

  • thrown in the trash
  • flushed down the toilet
  • placed in recycling containers

Put Sharps Waste in its Place!

  • Ask your health care provider or pharmacist if they take back used needles, lancets, and syringes.
  • Take your used needles, lancets, and syringes to drop-off collection sites (listed below for unincorporated residents) or household hazardous waste facilities.   Or you can search for a needle drop off location closest to your home on the County's waste / recycling database:  
  • Consider using a free "Mail-Back" service for proper disposal.
    • To sign up, call 1-844-633-7765 or 1-888-371-0717. Order online at or Each mail-back kit includes a sharps container, prepaid shipping, and packaging. Once the kit arrives, use the sharps container as directed and follow the mail-back instructions to ship the sharps container free of charge with USPS right from your home. 

Residents of unincorporated communities may take their home-generated medical waste sharps in closed rigid containers no larger than 2 Liters (1/2 gallon) to approved residential sharps collection drop boxes at the following locations:


Alpine Sheriff Station

2751 Alpine Blvd.

Alpine, CA 91901

Imperial Beach Sheriff Substation

845 Imperial Beach Boulevard

Imperial Beach, CA  91932


Borrego Springs Sheriff’s Office

571 Palm Canyon Dr.

Borrego Springs, CA 92004

Julian Sheriff Substation

2907 Washington St.

Julian, CA 92036


Bonita - Sunnyside Fire Station

4900 Bonita Road

Bonita, Ca  91902

Lakeside Sheriff's Station

12365 Parkside Drive

Lakeside, CA  92040

Campo Sheriff Substation

378 Sheridan Rd., PO Box 7

Campo, CA 91906-0007

Pine Valley Sheriff Substation

28696 Old Highway 80

Pine Valley, CA  92062


         Rancho San Diego Sheriff Station

         11486 Campo Rd.

         Spring Valley, CA 91978


          Fallbrook Sheriff Substation

          388 East Alvarado Street

          Fallbrook, CA 92028-2052

         Valley Center Sheriff Substation

         28201 N. Lake Wohlford Rd.

         Valley Center, CA 92082

  • Sharps Waste brochure for unincorporated area residents ( English / Spanish ).


For more information on home-generated sharps management in unincorporated areas, or to find out where to pick up a free sharps container, contact the County of San Diego Household Hazardous Hotline at 877-713-2784: