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Medical Waste Storage & Containers 101

Regulated Medical Waste (RMW) Containers

18, 28 & 38 Gallon Medical Waste Containers

In compliance with the California Health and Safety Code Sections 17600 - 118360. Containers shall comply with United States Department of Transportation requirements when prepared for transport offsite from the facility.

  • NO Loose Sharps can be placed inside of this container. (Use a sharps container)

  • NO PHARMACEUTICALS can be placed inside of this container

  • Dimensions & Tare Weight

    • 18 Gallon: 16"H x 19″W x 19″D *TW@8lb

    • 28 Gallon: 22"H x 19″W x 19″D *TW@9.6lb

    • 38 Gallon: 33"H x 19″W x 19″D *TW@11lb


Sharps Waste Containers

Primary Sharps Waste Container (Bedside)

“Sharps container” means a rigid puncture-resistant container used in patient care or research activities meeting the standards of, and receiving approval from, the United States Food and Drug Administration as a medical device used for the collection of
discarded medical needles or other sharps.

  • Sharps containers are single use and are expendable to the generator.  Sharps containers may be purchased from San Diego Medical Waste Services separately from your disposal service by visiting

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Biohazard Waste Containers

Primary Biohazard Waste Container (Bedside)

To containerize biohazard bags, a person shall do all of the following:

  • Medical waste may be placed into a biohazard bag not to exceed three pounds or one gallon

  • Tied, as required, in a patient room and shall be immediately transported upon completion of the procedure directly from the point of generation and placed into a Regulated Medical Waste RMW Container

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Pharmaceutical Waste Containers

Primary Pharmaceutical Waste Container (Chairside)

Pharmaceutical waste generated in California must be treated by incineration, or by an alternative treatment technology that has received approval from the Department. None of the charcoal-based products currently in use have gained this approval, from the state of California, so pharmaceuticals must be disposed of in a pharmaceutical waste container. Do not place pharmaceuticals mixed with these products into the solid waste, biohazard waste or sharps containers.

  • All Pharmaceuticals Must Be Placed Into A Pharmaceutical Waste Container At Point Of Generation (In Patient Room). 

  • Once Ready For Disposal, Place Pharmaceutical Waste Containers Next To (NOT INSIDE OF) The Regulated Medical Waste (RMW) Container To Be Picked Up During Your Scheduled Service Day. 

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