Biological Waste

Collect materials contaminated with hazardous biological agents in appropriate containers and sterilize/disinfect before disposal.

Biological waste includes:

  • Liquids such as used cell culturing media, supernatant, blood or blood fractions (serum) etc., which contain viable biological agents.
  • Any part of an animal infected (or suspected to be infected) with a communicable disease
  • Non-sharp, solid laboratory waste (empty plastic cell culture flasks and petri dishes, empty plastic tubes, gloves, wrapper, absorbent tissues, etc.) which may be, or is known to be, contaminated with viable biological agents.
  • All sharp and pointed items used in medical care, diagnosis, and research, including the manipulation and care of laboratory animals, which are considered potentially infectious.
  • Laboratory glassware which is known or suspected to be contaminated with hazardous biological agents.

Containment Level 1 Labs

  • Waste should be handled as non-hazardous (except when dealing with needles or if the waste contains Chemical or Radiation hazards).
  • Put waste into doubled, non-hazardous labelled autoclave bags supplied through MedStores.
  • DO NOT OVERFILL THE BAGS.
  • Seal the bags but leave room for steam to enter and exit.
  • Place the bag in an autoclave bin, found near the autoclaves, and place the bin in the autoclave.
  • After autoclaving, remove the bin, using oven gloves, and cool for several hours before placing the bags in the garbage.

Containment Level 2 Labs

  • Waste (including blood, tissue, bacterial plates and biologically contaminated gloves, pipettes and other garbage) must be autoclaved in doubled biohazard labelled autoclave bags.
  • The bags are twist-tied or taped shut and put into an autoclave basin.
  • After autoclaving both the Biosafety Certificate number and room number must be marked visibly on the bag.
  • The material will be picked up by the hazardous waste technicians. To arrange for a special pick up, contact Environmental Protection Services - Bio Waste at 416-946-3473 or email hazwaste.ehs@utoronto.ca.