The HSE-gateway

Problematic waste

Problematic waste is to be disposed in accordance to the university's guidelines and local procedures.

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Waste classified as problematic waste must be handled in relation to Guidelines for the disposal of hazardous waste and problematic waste, ionising radiation sources and explosive waste and the routines described below. 

Questions concerning problematic waste should be directed to the local waste contact person at the department/unit.

What is problematic waste?

All laboratory waste that may contain biological factors or chemical residues. The waste can be sharp or pointed objects.

General laboratory waste

All waste used in the laboratory must be placed in yellow containers. As, for example, tubes, pipette tips, paper with spills/chemical spills, gloves, etc.

Sharps or pointed objects
Cannulas, scalpel, razor blades, broken glass and other sharps or pointed objects that are made of metal or glass.
Syringes and scalpel blades are to be disposed in sharps boxes or suited plastic bottles. Sharps boxes are to be found in temporary waste disposal storage rooms for hazardous waste and problematic waste.

Pathological/biological waste
Animals, infectious parts of animals or large amounts of tissue from animals. Waste from operations and other pathological wastes which for aesthetic reasons are not to be found in the household waste. Animals or parts of animals must not be greater than that they fit the yellow container. In addition the container should be easily lifted, not heavy weighted.

Agarose gels or polymerized acrylamide-gels

All waste from mixing of cytostatics. Waste from infusion or injection, used gloves, paper etc. In general, all kinds of waste produced when managing chemotherapeutic agents are problematic waste. NB! Cytostatics itself is hazardous waste (chemical waste).

Infectious Waste
The waste containing pathogenic microorganisms or their toxins:

  • Waste that is directly contaminated with secretions, pus etc. from human or animal with serious infections.
  • Sharps or pointed objects (see above) contaminated with blood, pus or detritus.
  • Tissue samples, organs, blood, blood products and blood-stained bandages.
  • Waste from airborne infection isolation.

Empty chemical bottles of glass and other glass bottles from the laboratory
Empty chemical bottles of glass and medicine bottles, and empty chemical bottles of plastic must be sorted as problematic waste in yellow containers. 

Chemical bottles containing residues are to be disposed as hazardous waste.



All problematic waste shall be packed in specific, yellow, plastic containers. The containers appear in several sizes.  When the container is filled up to the max filling level, it is to be sealed. The container should be easily lifted, not heavy weighted.
Sharps boxes and/or plastic bottles with sharps or pointed objects shall be placed directly into the containers.

Empty sharps boxes and yellow plastic containers for packaging of problematic waste are to be found in the waste disposal storage rooms of hazardous waste and problematic waste.

If it is short on sharps boxes, yellow containers or stickers please inform the waste contact person at your department/unit.

It is not necessary to lable yellow containers

Storage rooms/pick up locations

Storage rooms/pick up locations

The sealed and labeled plastic containers are to be placed in specific spots for problematic waste in the waste disposal room for hazardous waste and problematic waste. 

Pick up locations for hazardous waste and problematic waste:

  • "Det nye odontologibygget", Årstadveien 19: waste room is next to the goods recieption.
  • BB-building: waste room is at the ground floor.
  • BB-building: "Dyreavdelingen" 6th. floor.
  • "Fellesbygget", Årstadveien 21: waste room, entrance from Alrek
  • Thormøhlens gate 55 (HIB): waste room, 1. floor
  • Thormøhlens gate 53 B, 1. floor
  • "Realfagbygget": special room in the basement
  • Møllendalsveien 61 (KMD)

If your workplace does not have cold storage rooms for problematic waste, the waste should, if necessary, be stored cold upon collecting day. On collecting day the waste has to be placed on the collect location before 10:00 a.m.

If it is short on sharps boxes or yellow containers please inform the waste contact person at your department/unit.