PRC S.O. to offer drug take back

Published 7:00 am Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Employees with the Pearl River County Sheriff’s Department will help rid households and streets of unwanted or expired prescription drugs during the 10th annual National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day sponsored by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration this Saturday.

This marks the fourth year the sheriff’s department is participating in the nationwide event, which encourages people to drop off unused and expired medications at various take-back locations across the country. The event is part of a national push to safely dispose of drugs and educate the public about prescription drug abuse.

Chief Deputy Shane Tucker said people in the community will have the option of throwing away any unused or outdated medications, ranging from narcotics to blood pressure medication, inside a drop-off box that will be placed at the Carriere Volunteer Fire Department, located at 7414 Highway 11, on Saturday between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.

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“It’ll be a safe and effective way to turn in unused medications,” Tucker said. “No questions will be asked about the medications being turned in and everyone is kept anonymous. Deputies will be there only to monitor the box and answer any questions.”

Once the drugs are collected, the sheriff’s department will turn the medications over to the DEA for safe disposal. Last year, the department collected 37 pounds of drugs during the event, Tucker said. Between 2010 and 2014, 4,823,251 pounds of drugs were collected nationwide, according to a press release from the DEA.

Tucker said the event allows people to safely dispose of drugs and prevent others from abusing them.

“This is a safe way to dispose of them rather than people throwing drugs in the trash, which some people may look inside and find them,” Tucker said.

Prescription drug abuse is a problem across the country. Seventy percent of people abusing prescription drugs attained them via friends or relatives, according to a 2011 Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s national survey.

Any hazardous or dangerous items, including medical sharps and needles like insulin syringes or aerosols such as asthma inhalers, will not be collected, according to the DEA’s website.

In the release, DEA Acting Administrator Chuck Rosenberg urged people nationwide to participate this Saturday for the welfare of communities. Rosenberg said, “Prescription drug abuse is a huge problem and this is a great opportunity for folks around the country to help reduce the threat. Please clean out your medicine cabinet and make your home safe from drug theft and abuse.”

For more information, visit the DEA’s website at or check out the sheriff’s department Facebook page at Pearl River County Sheriff’s Office.