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Recycling and Waste Management

Biohazardous and Medical Waste

Proper biohazardous waste treatment procedures will ensure consistent sterilization, personal protection, and experimental integrity. Your cooperation is required for regulatory compliance, and for an effective biohazardous waste management program.

Biohazardous waste includes, but is not limited to:

  • cell cultures and stocks
  • culture dishes
  • devices used with cultures
  • waste derived from the production of biological agents
  • animals or human surgical specimens
  • animal or human blood or body fluids
  • used sharps, contaminated animal carcasses, body parts, excrement and bedding
  • genetically modified plants

For additional information on biohazardous waste or biological safety, please refer to UCSD Biosafety Program overview. 

If you have any questions or concerns, contact the Division Safety Officer, at (858)534-6432.

Liquid Biohazardous Waste

Review the Biohazardous Waste Disposal Guidelines for Liquid Waste (PDF)

  • All liquid biohazardous waste must be sterilized using bleach or another suitable liquid disinfectant. The final concentration of liquid biohazardous waste to bleach should be 9:1 or 10% bleach.
  • Let waste/bleach mixture sit for 30min. Then pour down the drain.
  • If it is absolutely necessary to disinfect liquid biohazardous waste with an autoclave rather than chemically please contact the Division Safety Officer to make arrangements. 

Dry Biohazardous Waste

Review the Biohazardous Waste Disposal Guidelines for Solid Lab Waste (PDF)

  • Container:
    • Collect dry waste in double red biohazard waste bags.
    • Marketplace, Chemistry & Biochemistry Stockroom, and Core Bio Services sell bags preprinted with UCSD identification labels in different sizes and quantities.
Biohazard Symbol
  • Labeling:
    • Label both red bags with UCSD identification and generator information before waste is added.
    • University of California, San Diego
      9500 Gilman Drive, La Jolla, CA 92093
      (858) 534-3660, (858) 534-4357
      Bldg_________, Rm___________
  • Use:
    • Do not place free liquids, such as full conicals or tubes, into red bags.
    • Leave enough opening at the top of the bag to allow for steam to enter bag during autoclave cycle.
  • Disposal:
    • Place the full red bag in your building's designated biohazardous waste collection area to have it hauled for destruction.
    • Biohazardous Waste Collection Area:
      • AP&M’, Bonner Hall, Muir Biology, NSB, Pac Hall, York Hall - Autoclave rooms
      • CNCB - Locked cage on the loading dock of CMMW. The combination for the dumpster can be obtained from your lab manager or from the Division Safety Officer.

If the collection bins are full, do not set red bags on top of the collection bins, call EH&S at (858)534-2753. They will exchange the full bins for empty ones. Please make sure the lids are securely fastened on the collection bins.

Read Biohazardous and Medical Waste Overview for more information about biohazardous waste disposal.

Sharps Biohazardous Waste

Review the Biohazardous Waste Disposal Guidelines for Sharps Waste (PDF)

  • Container:
    • Select a rigid, leak-proof, puncture-resistant container. Sharps containers available on Marketplace fit most needs.
    • Sharps container with biohazard symbol
  • Labeling:
    • Label the sharps container with UCSD identification and generator information before waste is added.
    • University of California, San Diego
      9500 Gilman Drive, La Jolla, CA 92093
      (858) 534-3660, (858) 534-4357
      Bldg_________, Rm___________
  • Use:
    • Do not place free liquids, such as full syringes, in sharps containers. Sharps cannot extend above the "fill" line. 
  • Disposal:
    • Place the full sharps container in your building's designated biohazardous waste collection area to have it hauled for destruction.
  • Biohazardous Waste Collection Area
    • AP&M’, Bonner Hall, Muir Biology, NSB, Pac Hall, York HallAutoclave rooms
    • CNCB - Locked cage on the loading dock of CMMW. The combination for the dumpster can be obtained from your lab manager or from the  Division Safety Officer.

If the collection bins are full, do not set sharps containers on top of the collection bins, call EH&S at (858)534-2753. They will exchange the full bins for empty ones. Please make sure the lids are securely fastened on the collection bins.

Read Biohazardous and Medical Waste Overview for more information about biohazardous waste disposal.

 

Autoclaving Biohazardous Waste

  1. Autoclaving biohazardous waste is restricted to those who have received proper instruction and who have signed a statement acknowledging receipt of training. All autoclave use shall be recorded on the log sheet that is associated with the designated biohazardous waste autoclave.

  2. Biohazardous waste must be autoclaved for 60 minutes employing the liquid cycle at 250°F or 121°C.

  3. No more than 25 lbs of waste per run.


If you have any questions or concerns, contact the Division Safety Officer at (858) 534-6432.


Autoclaving Guidelines for Biohazardous Waste on Blink

Safety Assistance