No one appreciates the sacrifices of first responders more than the people of Houston.

But some of those people have had enough of a problem that’s been happening for years.

That’s medical waste being left behind by EMT’s and Houston firefighters in local communities.

One Houstonian sent this picture to me and Mayor Annise Parker.

It shows medical gloves left by EMT’s in a parking lot at a local business in South Park.

Apparently, there was a medical emergency.

In this day and age of infectious diseases one could appreciate a concern like this.

The complainant wrote:

“Paramedics in South Park are trifling…..these USED gloves were left in the parking lot after a visit from our area’s first responders overnight…..smh.” —with Isiah Carey and Annise Parker.

I have asked the Houston Fire Department how this should be handled and as soon as I get a response it will be posted!


HFD Responds with Investigation and policy reminder:

It is the mission of the HFD to provide superior level of emergency service that continually improves the quality of life, health and safety of citizens of Houston.  All EMS providers follow HFD Guideline 6.01 for the Disposal of Sharp and Non-Sharp Medical Waste (Code found below).  The HFD welcomes the comments and suggestions of all citizens.  We appreciate the report provided by this concerned citizen of South Park.  We will definitely look into this report and take all appropriate action if necessary.


6.01 Disposal of Sharp and Non-Sharp Medical Waste

The following information shall guide the member when disposing of waste contaminated with blood or Other Potentially Infectious Material (OPIM). 

A.    Non-Sharp Medical Waste

1.      All non-sharp medical waste shall be disposed of in a red, biohazard leak proof trash bag, and NOT in a common waste bag or container.

2.      Medical transport units shall carry one trash can equipped with a red, biohazard leak proof liner displaying the “biohazard” symbol.  This trashcan shall be utilized for non-sharp waste contaminated with blood or OPIM.

3.      First responders shall carry two or more red, biohazard leak proof bags for other non-sharp waste contaminated with blood or OPIM.


Thank you,

Ericka L. Duckworth

HFD Public Information Officer


  1. Concerned April 26, 2012 11:04 pm 

    I guess the HFD EMS crews are just going to have to stop all imminent life saving measures (you know, the ones where seconds count) to clean up before they transport to the hospital.

  2. John April 26, 2012 11:24 pm 

    Not all gloves are medical one is perfect and everyone should try to prevent litter but an EXTREMELY large percentage of EMS calls result in contact that is equivalent to a hand shake.

  3. Mr Bruce April 27, 2012 11:51 am 

    I will never again give HPD a box of gloves again! You try to help out HPD and the leave their gloves on the ground and HFD gets blamed! Nice!

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