Collapse to view only § 2503. Prohibition

§ 2501.
Findings
The Congress finds the following:
(1) The washing ashore of potentially infectious medical wastes from public vessels of the United States may pose serious and widespread risks to public health and to the welfare of coastal communities.
(2) Current Federal law provides inadequate protections against the disposal of such wastes from such vessels into ocean waters.
(3) Operators of such vessels must take immediate action to stop disposing of such wastes into ocean waters.
(Pub. L. 100–688, title III, § 3102, Nov. 18, 1988, 102 Stat. 4152.)
§ 2502.
Definitions
For the purposes of this chapter:
(1)
Potentially infectious medical waste

The term “potentially infectious medical waste” includes isolation wastes; infectious agents; human blood and blood products; pathological wastes; sharps; body parts; contaminated bedding; surgical wastes; and other disposable medical equipment and material that may pose a risk to the public health, welfare or the marine environment.

(2)
Public vessel

The term “public vessel” means a vessel of any type whatsoever (including hydrofoils, air-cushion vehicles, submersibles, floating craft whether propelled or not, and fixed or floating platforms) that is owned, or demise chartered, and operated by the United States Government, and is not engaged in commercial service.

(Pub. L. 100–688, title III, § 3103, Nov. 18, 1988, 102 Stat. 4152.)
§ 2503.
Prohibition
After 6 months after November 18, 1988, no public vessel shall dispose of potentially infectious medical waste into ocean waters unless—
(1)
(A) the health or safety of individuals on board the vessel is threatened; or
(B) during time of war or a declared national emergency;
(2) the waste is disposed of beyond 50 nautical miles from the nearest land; and
(3)
(A) in the case of a public vessel which is not a submersible, the waste is sterilized, properly packaged, and sufficiently weighted to prevent the waste from coming ashore after disposal; and
(B) in the case of a public vessel which is a submersible, the waste is properly packaged and sufficiently weighted to prevent the waste from coming ashore after disposal.
(Pub. L. 100–688, title III, § 3104, Nov. 18, 1988, 102 Stat. 4152.)
§ 2504.
Guidance

Not later than 3 months after November 18, 1988, the Secretary of Defense and the head of each affected agency, in consultation with the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, shall each issue guidance for public vessels under the jurisdiction of their agency regarding implementation of section 2503 of this title.

(Pub. L. 100–688, title III, § 3105, Nov. 18, 1988, 102 Stat. 4153.)