Medicines & Sharps Disposal

What's In Your Water?

To prevent harm to our environment, never flush medicines down the toilet or the sink. Medicines are considered hazardous waste, and water treatment facilities are unable to remove these substances from waste water. As a result, medicines still present in the effluent returned to the Bay may harm aquatic organisms and eventually fish and wildlife along the food chain. You can minimize potential problems by safely disposing of unused medicines.

Proper Disposal of Medicine

There are many options for safe disposal of expired or unwanted medicine, including collection kiosks located throughout Santa Clara County. Medicines can be dropped off at the following locations:

Mountain View Police & Fire Administration 
Main Lobby - Designated Box
1000 Villa Street 
Lobby hours: Monday - Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Visit this link for more information or call 650-903-6224

Map Medications Drop Off Locations

West Valley Sheriff Station
1601 S. De Anza Blvd., Cupertino
Lobby hours: Monday - Friday 8 a.m.- 5 p.m.  

Palo Alto Regional Water Quality Control Plant
2501 Embarcadero Way, Palo Alto
Lobby Hours: Monday - Friday, 8 a.m.- 4 p.m.

Visit the following websites to find additional medicine drop-off locations near you:

Sharps Disposal

State law prohibits a person from placing home-generated sharps in their trash or recycling containers.  Home-generated sharps are defined as disposable hypodermic needles, syringes, lancets, and other medical devices used for self-injection or blood test. To safely dispose of your used home-generated sharps, place them in a biohazard sharps container. Contact your doctor or pharmacist to ask if they have a take-back program for your used sharps. Many online vendors offer pre-addressed, prepaid mail back boxes to safely return used sharps. The Countywide Household Hazardous Waste Program has more information about safe sharps disposal, including links to receive free sharps collection containers.

Used sharps may also be safely disposed at the following locations:.

Police & Fire Safety EvenTS

Periodically, the Mountain View Police and Fire Departments sponsor safety events, which might include medicine take-back, document shredding and e-waste collection. Visit or call 650-903-6224 for more information.