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National Prescription Drug Take Back Day offers safe options for drug disposal

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ST. ALBANS, WV (WOWK) – Today is National Drug Take Back Day. It is a chance for those who want to turn in unused or expired prescription medication.

“This is just a great opportunity to be able to do the right thing and help a lot of people,” said Chief Joe Crawford with the St. Albans Police Department.

He said those unused or expired medications in your home could be putting you or your loved ones at risk.

Law enforcement agencies across the country are teaming up to give people a chance to dispose of them properly through a partnership with the Drug Enforcement Administration.

“We don’t want to make the additional drugs available to people who don’t need them or shouldn’t have them especially children,” said Kanawha County Sheriff Mike Rutherford.

According to the DEA the majority of teenagers abusing prescription drugs get them from family and friends and find them in the the home medicine cabinet. Flushing un-used medications can also pollute community water systems.

Unused prescription drugs thrown in the trash can be retrieved and abused or illegally sold.

“It can result in actual crime,” Rutherford said. “People want to come in people’s houses and get their medication and so forth.”

The takeback event isn’t just for prescription medication. You can also drop off items that you purchased over the counter.

Crawford said they keep privacy in mind.

“We don’t look at any of the labels,” he said. “If you have labels tear them off if you want. We don’t look at the labels and see who is dropping off what.”

The Kanawha County Sheriff’s Office will be participating in the event at their various detachments across the county. St. Albans will have a drive through drop off in the parking lot of the police department. This is part of a national campaign so there is likely an option near you as well.

Last year, more than 440 tons of old prescription drugs were collected across the country.

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