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Taking Back Drugs On Both Sides Of The River

By: WTAP News
By: WTAP News

Updated: 04/24/2013 6:30 P.M.

Time to check your medicine cabinet for those old, unused prescription drugs.

Saturday is National Drug Take Back Day.

The idea is to get rid of those medications that could fall into the wrong hands. Prescription drug abuse is a growing problem, almost as much as the use of illegal drugs.

"Some of the reasons you would turn in your unused medication are that the drugs can be stolen and illegally sold," says Deputy Scott Mankins of the Washington County Sheriff's Office, "children and pets can be poisoned if they find and swallow these drugs, and unused medicines are environmental toxins, and flushing them down the toilet or sink can contaminate our soil and drinking water."

The collections will take place Saturday between 10 A.M. and 2 P.M.

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9/29/2012 7:08 P.M.

Prescription drug abuse is a huge problem on both sides of the river, but an event Saturday was aimed to help get rid of some problem with drugs all together.

"A lot of people like to flush them and we don't want them getting back in the water or getting dumped in the river," says Williamstown Police Department Patrolman, Terry Deuley.

"If you throw it in the trash, that leaves the opportunity for someone else to get into it and wind up back on the streets and that's the whole point, getting them off the streets."

Law enforcement all around the valley are working to get those drugs off the streets and into bins. It's all part of national Drug Take Back Day.

Pearl Guyer is a volunteer for the event. She's given up her day for many years to help collect drugs and make sure they don't get in the wrong hands. She says, "somebody could break in and if they're looking for drugs especially that's bad. There's a lot of cancer drugs out there and we don't want just anybody getting ahold of them"

With locations set up all over Ohio and West Virginia, people have the chance to get rid of their unwanted pills and medicines in a proper way.

"Parents have maybe passed away and they'll bring their drugs in. Or drugs that have just expired they'll bring in and that happens a lot," Guyer says.

Patrolman Deuley thinks this event is a great idea, and the fact that it happens a few time than a year brings even more awareness."Just getting them out of the house and knowing they're being disposed of in a proper manner rather than ending up on the street."

It's not just prescription pills and medicines. People were dropping off much anything taking up space in their medicine cabinets.

"We take prescription drugs plus vitamins. A lot of times there will be liquid bottles of cough medicine, inhalers, things like that," says Guyer.

And what happens after all the drugs are collected?

"We just throw it in the back of the truck. We take them to Charleston to an incinerator down there and make sure everything gets destroyed," says Patrolman Deuley.

On Saturday, Wood County collected over 396 pounds of unwanted drugs. That's up 50 pounds from when they collected in April.

In Washington County, 116 pounds were collected Saturday. Back in April, they collected about 250 pounds.


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