What to do with used needles and crack pipes

  • For health and safety reasons, sharp objects cannot be put in the garbage or recycling, or flushed down the toilet (By-law 2009-396, Schedule “J”)
  • Garbage is compacted during collection so even when placed in a puncture-proof container, needles, crack pipes or glass stems can be exposed and injure someone

There are several ways to properly dispose of needles or crack pipes:Image of a Needle drop box

Needle drop boxes

Residents should place their needles or glass stems in a non-breakable puncture proof container with a lid (no larger than a two-litre pop bottle or 15” by 4 ½”) and place in one of the secure tamper-proof Needle Drop Boxes available at various locations throughout Ottawa.

Please note that larger containers of needles can be dropped off at Ottawa Public Health locations at 100 Constellation Drive or 179 Clarence Street.

Needle Drop Boxes are at the following locations:

Name Address Drop Box location
AIDS Committee of Ottawa 700-251 Bank Street In stairwell
Bell Pharmacy 737 Gladstone Avenue Back parking lot
Burger King 199 Montreal Road On Montreal Road along fence
Capital Parking Lot 151 George Street On George Street along fence
Carlington Community and Health Services 900 Merivale Road Main entrance
Causeway 22 O’Meara Street Back parking lot
Centre 507 507 Bank Street Main entrance
Centretown Community Health Centre 420 Cooper Street Main entrance
Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO) 401 Smyth Road Main entrance
*City of Ottawa - Bylaw Services (no public access) 735 Industrial Avenue Inside garage
City of Ottawa - Office Complex 100 Constellation Drive Main entrance
City of Ottawa - Sexual Health Centre 179 Clarence Street Main entrance
City of Ottawa Metcalfe Client Service Centre 8243 Victoria Street, Metcalfe Main entrance
Dulude Arena 941 Clyde Avenue East side of building
Elizabeth Bruyère Hospital 43 Bruyère Street Main entrance
Fire Station 3845 Richmond Road  Main entrance
Fire Station 500 Charlemagne Boulevard  Main entrance
Fire Station 135 Preston Street  Main entrance
Fire Station 1075 Greenbank Road Main entrance
Fire Station 380 Eagleson Road Main entrance
Fire Station 1443 Carling Avenue Main entrance
Fire Station 635 O’Connor Street Main entrance
Fire Station 530 King Edward Avenue Main entrance
Fire Station 1300 Woodroffe Avenue Main entrance
Fire Station 1397 Richmond Road Main entrance
Fire Station 230 Viewmount Drive Main entrance
Fire Station 3336 McCarthy Drive Main entrance
Fire Station 900 Industrial Avenue Main entrance
Fire Station 2355 Alta Vista Drive Main entrance
Fire Station 900 Montreal Road Main entrance
Fire Station 6213 Jean D’Arc Boulevard Main entrance
Fire Station 1700 Blair Road Main entrance
Fire Station 275 Coventry Road Main entrance
Fire Station 220 Beechwood Avenue Main entrance
Fire Station 60 Knoxdale Road Main entrance
Fire Station 3255 Conroy Road Main entrance
Fire Station 700 Brookfield Road Main entrance
Fire Station 1641 Main Street (Stittsville) Main entrance
Fire Station 5669 Manotick Main Street Main entrance
Fire Station 1021 Teron Road (Kanata North)
Fire Station  700 Brookfield Road Main Entrance
Medical Building 737 Parkdale Avenue Front sidewalk
Montfort Hospital 713 Montreal Road Near main entrance
Ontario Addiction Treatment Centre 401 Somerset Street West  Main entrance
Ontario Addiction Treatment Centre 263 Montreal Road Main Entrance
Ontario Medical Supply 1100 Algoma Road Near main entrance
Ottawa Community Housing 1400 Lepage Avenue Seating area beside parking lot
Ottawa Community Housing  123 Augusta Street Main Entrance
Ottawa Community Housing  380 Murray Street Main Entrance 
Ottawa Community Housing  251/255 Donald Street Main Entrance 
Ottawa Community Housing  415 Maclaren Street  Main Entrance 
Ottawa Community Housing  2100 Russell Road  Main Entrance
Ottawa Community Housing (Bellevue Community Centre) 1475 Caldwell Avenue Main entrance
Ottawa Fertility Clinic 955 Green valley Crescent Main entrance behind building
Ottawa Hospital - Riverside Campus 1967 Riverside Drive Main entrance
Ottawa Hospital - Civic Campus 1053 Carling Avenue Main entrance
Ottawa Hospital - General Campus 501 Smyth Road Main entrance
Parking garage 141 Clarence Street Murray Street entrance
Public Works Garage 380 Catherine Street  Front Gate
Public Works Garage 1683 Woodward Avenue  Front Gate
Public Works Garage 320 Bloomfield Avenue  Front Gate
Public Works Garage 3100 Conroy Road  Front Gate
Public Works Garage 356 MacArthur Avenue  Front Gate
Public Works Garage 29 Hurdman Road  Front Gate
Queensway-Carleton Hospital 3045 Baseline Road Main entrance
Richmond IDA Pharmacy 6179 Perth Street, Richmond Main entrance
Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre 1145 Carling Avenue Main entrance
Saint Vincent Hospital 60 Cambridge Street North Main entrance
Sandy Hill Community Health Centre 221 Nelson Street Main entrance
Shepherds of Good Hope 233 Murray Street 2nd floor Men's Shelter
Shepherds of Good Hope 233 Murray Street Back parking lot
Somerset West Community Health Centre 55 Eccles Street Main entrance
St. Margaret’s Church 206 Montréal Road Back parking lot
Stittsville IDA Pharmacy 1250 Main Street Main entrance
Vanier Snack Shack 200 Deschamps Avenue Near main entrance
Wabano Centre for Aboriginal Health 299 Montreal Road Main entrance

For more information on the location of Needle Drop Boxes, call 3-1-1.

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How to pick up and dispose of needles and crack pipes

Children should never touch a discarded needle or crack pipe. If an adult chooses not to pick up a needle or crack pipe, call 3-1-1 to make arrangements to have the City pick them up immediately.

How to pick up a needle or crack pipe on your own:

  1. Treat all needles and crack pipes (glass stems) as contaminated.
  2. Wear gloves (i.e. latex, rubber or leather gardening gloves). Gloves are meant to protect against fluid contamination, not punctures or cuts.
  3. Use tongs, pliers or tweezers to pick up the needle. Be sure to clean and disinfect the pickup instrument afterwards.
  4. Pick up the needle by the plastic end (syringe).
  5. Point the needle tip away from your body. Be very careful not to poke yourself with the needle.
  6. Put the sharps disposal container on a stable surface next to the needle. Do not hold the container in your hand while placing the needle inside.
  7. Place the needle point down into the container. Do not force the needle into the container.
  8. If you do not have a specialized sharps container, put the needle into a non-breakable, puncture-proof container with a lid. (i.e. thick plastic bottle or tin can.)
  9. Close the container securely.
  10. Find the nearest needle disposal location. Do not flush needles down the toilet or put them in the garbage or recycling box.
  11. Wash your hands or use hand sanitizer after removal of gloves.

If a needle injury occurs, seek immediate medical attention.

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