A device (1) for destroying needles and the like, comprising a body (3)
holding batteries and a charging circuit and a disposable head (2) housing the
electrodes (41, 42) and an aperture (22) in its top to provide access to the electrodes.
The electrodes are shaped to allow a needle inserted in the aperture to come into
contact with both electrodes. The electrodes are made from copper, either in
combination with carbon, or with carbon coated onto at least the under surface of the
upper electrode. This prevents fragments of the needle from adhering to the copper
electrodes as it is destroyed and arcing, causing pitting of the electrodes. The
charging circuit allows a rapid charge of the batteries and a test circuit is provided
which allows and operator to check whether there is enough charge for the destruction
of a needle or whether the batteries need to be charged.