If you have any medications around your home that are expired or you no longer take, you can safely dispose of them this weekend.
The Sevierville Police Department is participating in the Drug Enforcement Administration’s (DEA’s) National Drug Take Back Initiative on Saturday. An officer will be on duty in the Department’s lobby to assist anyone with questions.
“Citizens may drop-off expired, unused and unwanted prescription drugs to the Sevierville Police Department for destruction,” the Sevierville Police Department advised. “The service is free and anonymous.”
Rates of prescription drug abuse, overdoses and accidental poisonings are increasing across the United States. People may not be aware that old and unused medications in the home can contribute to this epidemic.
“The public has embraced the opportunity these Take-Back Day events provide to prevent pill abuse and theft by ridding their homes of potentially dangerous expired, unused, or unwanted prescription drugs,” the DEA said in a news release. “Almost twice as many Americans (6.8 million) currently abuse prescription drugs than the number of those using cocaine, hallucinogens, heroin, and inhalants combined, according to the 2012 National Survey on Drug Use and Health. Surveys of users have found that the majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including from the home medicine cabinet.”
Many people mistakenly believe they should flush such medications down the toilet or throw them in the trash. These types of drug disposal can be hazardous to people and the environment. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has found detectable levels of many medications in tap water, streams and other ground water sources. Septic systems and municipal water treatment systems are unable to filter many medications out of wastewater.
In the three and a half years since the program began, the DEA and more than 4,200 participating law enforcement partners collected in excess of 1,700 tons of expired, unwanted prescription medications.
The Sevierville Police Department previously collected an average of about forty-five pounds of drugs at Drug Take Back events.
National Drug Take Back Initiative will be held Saturday, April 26 from 10am-2pm at the Sevierville Police Department, 300 Gary Wade Boulevard.
Types of drugs accepted include:
- All loose pills and powders.
- Liquid drugs are only accepted in sealed packaging.
- Sealed drugs and aids (i.e. diabetic supplies, meters, etc.)
The department is unable at this time to accept syringes or other types of drug paraphernalia.
Can’t make it to Saturday’s Drug Take Back Initiative? The Sevierville Police Department has a Drug Take Back receptacle where people can drop off on any day of the week, at any time of day.
Contact Lt. Ken Garner at 865.868.1753 or email at [email protected] with any questions.