Drug Take Back Day on Saturday

Peninsula Daily News

EXPIRED, UNUSED AND unwanted prescription drugs can be taken for safe disposal to several locations on the North Olympic Peninsula on Saturday.

The Clallam County Sheriff's Office and the Port Angeles, Sequim and Port Townsend police departments will participate in the free National Drug Take Back Day.

The events are completely anonymous; no identification is required in order to participate.

Controlled and noncontrolled prescription drugs as well as over-the-counter medications can be dropped off between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. at the following locations:

Locations

■ In Port Angeles, the main parking lot of the Clallam County Courthouse, 223 E. Fourth St.

The event will be staffed by the Port Angeles Police Department and Clallam County Sheriff's Office.

■ In Sequim, the Sequim Police Department office, Suite 16, 609 W. Washington St.

The event will be hosted by the Sequim Police Department.

■ In Port Townsend, Safeway, 422 W. Sims Way, hosted by the Port Townsend Police Department.

“No questions asked,” said Officer Luke Bogues, department spokesman.

“We just want to make sure we get them off the streets so they do not fall into the hands of people who abuse them or children who accidentally take them,” Bogues said.

Drugs prescribed by veterinarians also will be accepted, Bogues said.

Some drugs will not be accepted because of the potential hazard posed by blood-borne pathogens, according to a joint statement from the Port Angeles and Sequim police departments and the Clallam County Sheriff's Office.

These include intravenous solutions, injectibles, syringes and medical waste.

The pharmaceutical drugs, including highly addictive narcotic painkillers, are taken to an Environmental Protection Agency-approved incinerator in Spokane, where law enforcement officials destroy the drugs they seize on the street.

This will be the seventh National Drug Take Back Day sponsored by the federal Drug Enforcement Agency in cooperation with participating local law enforcement agencies.

“Unused, expired and unneeded medicines can be a serious danger to those living in the residence, especially for young children and pets,” the Clallam County statement said.

“Such drugs and medications can be stolen, misused and abused by others.”

Obtained from friends, family

Studies show a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including from the home medicine cabinet, the statement said.

Drugs that are flushed down the drain or put in garbage containers can be harmful to animals and the environment.

The Jefferson County Sheriff's Office will not participate in Saturday's event, said Sheriff Tony Hernandez, but the office accepts unwanted drugs and medications during regular business hours Mondays through Fridays all year, as do the Clallam County Sheriff's Office in the county courthouse and the Port Angeles and Sequim police departments.

The Port Townsend Police Department had accepted unwanted drugs year-round but has recently decided to do so no longer, Bogues said.

Residents also can dispose of their unused medications with the exception of controlled substances and liquids at Jim's Pharmacy, 424 E. Second St. in Port Angeles, during its regular store hours.

Last modified: October 26. 2013 9:13AM
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