ANCHORAGE (KTUU) As the snow begins to melt, the ugly secrets of Anchorage are slowly being revealed. That includes old liquor bottles, human waste as well as used needles.
"If somebody was maybe to have had Hepatitis C or HIV and was activity using needles, you want to be really careful cause that one stick could lead potentially to that transmission," said Andy Jones, who is the director at the Office of Substance Misuse and Addiction Prevention for the Department of Health and Social Services said.
Jones says he expects needles, lost in the snow during the winter, to start turning up across town. Here's what he says you should do if you find one.
1. Wear gloves to pick up the needle.
2. Put the needles in a puncture-proof container. Plastic bottles are best, but it has to be thicker than a soda bottle. Thicker plastic bottles like kitty litter jugs or detergent bottles work best.
3. Take the container to a drop-off site or landfill. If you want to put the container in your trash bin, wrap the lid in Duct tape and make sure to put a label on it that says needles.
Drop off sites in Anchorage are at Four As and the lab at Providence Hospital on the main campus. In the Mat-Su, you can use the Central Landfill or use a puncture-proof container with a lid.