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:

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:



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 - 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
*City of Ottawa - Bylaw Services (no public access) 735 Industrial Avenue Inside garage

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 Beachwood Avenue Main entrance

Medical Building

737 Parkdale Avenue

Front sidewalk

Montfort Hospital

713 Montreal Road

Near main entrance

Ontario Medical Supply

1100 Algoma Road

Near main entrance

Ottawa Community Housing (Bellevue Community Centre) 1475 Caldwell Avenue Main entrance
Ottawa Community Housing 1400 Lepage Avenue Seating area beside parking lot
Ottawa Fertility Clinic 955 Green valley Crescent Main entrance behind building

Ottawa Hospital - Civic Campus

1053 Carling Avenue

Main entrance

Ottawa Hospital - General Campus

501 Smyth Road

Main entrance

Ottawa Hospital - Riverside Campus

1967 Riverside Drive

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

St. Margaret’s Church

206 Montréal Road

Back parking lot

Saint Vincent Hospital

60 Cambridge Street North

Main entrance

Stittsville IDA Pharmacy

1250 Main Street

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

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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