Hazardous & Medical waste shredders

Complex waste, rich in potential

Some materials are typically considered too complex to shred. A number of operators steer away from handling hazardous wastes such as batteries, contaminated drums and ABP-contaminated plastics for example, or clinical wastes including soiled dressings, surgical gowns and sanitary products, due to their corrosive nature. But this seemingly high risk waste does still have a resource value, and shredders exist that ARE up to the job. So, rather than sending these difficult-to-decompose materials to landfill – with 3 billion nappies disposed of per year alone, for instance – why not prioritise the recycling or energy recovery route instead?

Speak to us about shredding hazardous waste

How can UNTHA help you shred hazardous waste?

  • We’ve engineered cutter configurations specifically for this waste stream, with mechanical seals, bearings and gearboxes protected from any ingress of corrosive materials.
  • The contents of medical and hospital waste can never be guaranteed, so we’ve designed robust foreign object protection mechanisms so that unexpected items – even as tricky as a titanium hip joint – can be extracted with ease, without any machine damage.
  • Some clients have asked us to design turnkey solutions complete with separation equipment to maximise material recovery rates and ensure a safe, high quality shredding process, however hazardous the application.
  • Our machines may not carry the lowest price tag, but clients will vouch for their unrivalled cost effectiveness in terms of ongoing running costs, productivity and uptime.
  • We know seeing is believing, so we offer free trials at our North Yorkshire HQ, enabling you to test our hazardous waste shredders using your own materials.

Why shred hazardous waste?


It is important to consider the health risks associated with hazardous and medical waste disposal. For example, as a nation, do we want sanitary products and surgical dressings slowly rotting on a landfill site? Or would we rather shred such high calorific value materials to ensure their safe use via the Waste to Energy market?


Shredders can form part of turnkey waste treatment systems which enable contaminated materials to be safely cleansed and processed for reinsertion into the resource stream.


The relatively short lifespan of batteries means a large volume are discarded every day. But due to their heavy metal and toxic chemical content, their safe disposal is critical. A regulated shredding process forms a crucial part of a carefully-controlled recycling process, whereby the reclamation rates of valuable metals can be maximised and soil and water courses can be protected from contamination.


Often, by shredding arisings such as clinical waste, it is possible to liberate and extract valuable composite resources such as silicone absorption beads from sanitary products, which can be reused in the remanufacturing process.


Despite stringent waste segregation methodologies within the medical industry, the fast-paced, human-centric nature of the hospital environment means objects like sharps can sometimes end up in a bin meant only for surgical gowns or condemned linen. Shredding helps liberate and separate such materials from the incorrect stream.


Even when hazardous waste containers are to be incinerated, reliable handling equipment is required to ‘destroy’ these often heavily-contaminated materials. Shredding represents one of the safest disposal routes, even for metal and plastic drums filled with bio-waste, sludges, paints and other hazardous substances.

Which hazardous wastes can we shred?

Our range of hazardous waste shredders:


“It’s our mission to take tougher waste streams and turn them into something really exciting. We embarked on a global search for world class waste handling technologies and the result is a UK-first plant and something which I hope will attract the attention of our peers internationally too.”

Rob Andrews, managing director

Tidy Planet

“Our plant design process took almost five years, part of which involved trials at UNTHA’s state-of-the-art test centre. However, once complete and patented, we knew we’d devised a sustainable solution for a number of high hazard commercial entities worldwide.”

Simon Webb, managing director

See all complex and hazardous shredding resources

Book a trial

If you’re considering an investment in new technology, we invite you to visit our HQ to try one of our shredders, for free, using your own materials.

Order spare parts

With millions of pounds of consignment stock available at our central UK HQ, we have hundreds of product lines
available for immediate dispatch.

Request a Quote

To explore the indicative cost of a new shredding solution, complete this short form to get the conversation started.