Tooele County Facility Solid Waste Permit:
Stericycle Inc.

In February 2015, Stericycle submitted a permit application to the former Division of Solid and Hazardous Waste (DSHW) for a solid-waste permit for a new hospital, medical, and infectious waste incinerator (HMIWI) facility in Tooele, Utah. The new facility would replace the current waste incinerator facility in North Salt Lake, Utah.

The facility will receive and incinerate packaged medical waste using a process similar to its current North Salt Lake facility. No radioactive or hazardous wastes will be accepted. The facility is designed to operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week, with a maximum permitted capacity of 18,000 tons per year, for an average of 49.3 tons per day or 4,100 pounds per hour.


The Division of Waste Management and Radiation Control issued a new solid-waste permit on September 1, 2017, for the Tooele facility. WMRC evaluated the permit application and concluded that the facility meets all state and federal requirements.

The division received oral and written comments on the 2016 draft permit. DWMRC considered each comment before final issuance of the solid-waste permit and recorded, documented, and addressed each comment in detail in the Response to Comments document below.


The Division of Waste Management and Radiation Control (DWMRC) prepared a draft solid waste permit (25 MB) for the proposed Stericycle Tooele County Medical Waste Incinerator at 9250 Rowley Road, Tooele, Utah. The source is intended to replace the HMIWI source that is owned by Stericycle and is currently operating in North Salt Lake. The public comment period ran from October 31, 2016, to January 6, 2017. A public hearing was also held on December 16, 2016.


In December 2014, the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) and Stericycle reached a Settlement Agreement for violations asserted in an August 2014 Notice of Violation issued to the company. Terms of the agreement included relocation of the facility to Tooele County. In February 2015, Stericycle submitted permit applications to the Division of Air Quality (DAQ) and the Division of Waste Management and Radiation Control (DSHW) for the construction and operation of the new facility.

Permit Conditions

The attachments (10.5 MB) stipulate permit conditions for facility operations, including:

  • Description of acceptable and non-conforming wastes
  • Waste handling and storage procedures
  • Bottom ash analysis, including sample collection, analytical procedures, quality assurance/quality control, data evaluation and waste management, reporting, and record-keeping requirements
  • Waste acceptance protocol, including waste packaging and tracking
  • Inspection procedures, including frequency of inspections, areas subject to inspection, and corrective action
  • Personnel training and recordkeeping for training
  • Facility security
  • Preparedness and prevention planning to prevent and respond to an emergency at the facility
  • Closure and financial assurance
  • Radiation screening protocols

Acceptable Wastes

Acceptable wastes include regulated medical wastes that are generated in the diagnosis, treatment, or immunization of humans or animals or related research, in the production/testing of biological materials (vaccines), in the preparation and administration of chemotherapy waste, and wastes defined by federal, state and local laws as medical, biohazardous, biomedical, or infectious.

Under the permit, the following wastes are acceptable for treatment at Stericycle’s Tooele facility:

  • Biohazardous waste, including pathological waste
  • Laboratory waste, including cultures (medical or pathological), cultures/stocks of infectious agents (research and industrial), and vaccines and related wastes.
  • Surgical specimens/tissues, contaminated animal parts, tissues, carcasses or body fluids
  • Fluid blood/blood products, containers/equipment and exudates, secretions, body fluids including, but not limited to, isolation waste
  • Sharps waste including, but not limited to, needles, syringes, blades, needles with attached tubing, and medical/laboratory glassware
  • Other medical waste as required by the infection control staff, physician, veterinarian or local health officer to be isolated and handled as regulated medical waste.
  • Trace-contaminated chemotherapy (antineoplastic/cytotoxic drugs) waste
  • Contraband
  • Other Wastes, including expired and unused pharmaceuticals; agriculture (APHIS) waste; outdated, off-specification or unused consumer commodities; confidential records; and recalled or outdated disposable medical equipment or supplies
  • Sharps and I.V. tubing and bags/bottles
  • Intravenous tubing, bags, bottles, vials and syringes used in chemotherapy preparation and administration that contain only residual amounts of antineoplastic drugs
  • Municipal solid waste contaminated with potentially infectious materials
  • Other non-hazardous waste as approved by the Division of Waste Management and Radiation Control.
  • Special wastes such as furniture contaminated with potentially infectious materials, infectious waste, or dead animals

Non-conforming Wastes

Non-conforming wastes will not be accepted for treatment and include the following materials:

  • Hazardous waste
  • Complete human remains (e.g., that include head and/or torso), cadavers, and recognizable fetal remains
  • Compressed gas cylinders and canisters, including intact aerosol cans
  • Radioactive materials
  • Explosive materials
  • Bulk cytotoxic materials
  • Full or partially full I.V. bottles/bags and vials of chemotherapy agents that constitute a hazardous waste
  • PCBs
  • Household waste
  • Yard Waste
  • Industrial Waste
  • Asbestos
  • Asphalt

Wastes that Require Approval

  • Ebola wastes
  • Prion wastes
  • Chronic Wasting Disease wastes
  • Avian influenza waste
  • Infectious waste regulated by the Center of Disease Control (CDC), Department of Transportation (DOT), Department of Agriculture, or Department of Homeland Security

Waste Handling, Storage, and Acceptance Protocol

Waste will arrive in containers delivered by truck to the Tooele facility and will be staged for processing or maintained in storage until ready to be processed. All containers will be weighed, scanned to document receipt, and monitored for radioactivity. Waste from the containers will be loaded into the feed system and charge hopper, and an automated waste feed system will continuously feed waste material into one of the two HMIWI units.

Waste acceptance, screening procedures, and guidelines are specified in the permit’s waste-acceptance protocol and include screening requirements for non-conforming, prohibited radioactive and hazardous waste. Stericycle will continue to employ a tracking system on containers through labeling with the generator’s unique code. Packaging requirements, inspection procedures, and personnel training requirements are also included in the permit. See the nine permit attachments (10.5 MB) for further details.

Last Updated:


Back to top