Despite recent wintery weather, Spring is here. And with the melting snow, some Brattleboro residents and business owners are finding used syringes and needles on their property. This type of medical waste requires special handling.
This information is from the Vermont Department of Health:
If you find a “sharp”, you can wear heavy gloves and pick it up, or use tongs or pliers to grab it. Do not handle sharps with bare hands. Teach children to tell an adult if they see a syringe or needle on the ground.
How should you get rid of sharps? Do not throw sharps into the trash or toilet. Use a heavy-duty laundry detergent or bleach container with a screw top. Do not use soda or water bottles. Carefully put the used sharps in the container with the needle-end down. Do not fill the container completely full Label the container with the words: DO NOT RECYCLE!
When the container is ready for disposal, screw the cap on tightly and cover the top with strong tape, like duct tape. Dispose of the container with your household trash. DO NOT PUT THE CONTAINER IN YOUR RECYCLING.
Sometimes, even when you’re careful, you might get stuck by a needle. Here’s what you do: Stop what you’re doing. Let the wound bleed a bit, then wash with soap and water. Apply antiseptic and a bandage if needed. Make a note with the day and time of the injury, the needle’s location, and what it looked like (was it dirty?). Go to an emergency room or urgent care center right away and tell them you’ve been stuck with a discarded sharp. Medical professionals may suggest a blood test or vaccine.
The Brattleboro Police Department wants you to be safe as you clean up your properties for spring. For more information, visit HealthVermont.gov