3 March 2000

Needles a danger

USED needles and other sharps must be disposed of carefully after use on farm, warns the Health and Safety Executive.

It says more producers are using hypodermic needles for treating stock, and are failing to dispose of them afterwards.

While warning that putting needles from farms in domestic refuse is dangerous and illegal, the HSE adds that purpose-designed sharps boxes are readily available via vets or animal health merchants and are easy to use.

Boxes should be made to British Standard 7320:1990, and where waste has to be transported by road, should be the type approved for waste in UN category 3291, it says.

An alternative in some areas is a scheme where producers can return filled sharps boxes to the health authority or to vets for disposal. &#42