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News From 91.3 KUWS
Superior Launches Pharmaceutical Drop Box Program
The Superior Police Department has a new program to safely get rid of your unwanted medications. Joe Gigliotti reports.
The Superior Police Department is the home for the Pharmaceutical Drop Box, a program Police Chief Charles LaGesse says is needed to address the abuse and improper disposal of unwanted pills.
"It’s a large problem. Some of the prescription painkillers are commonly abused. They’re very addictive, so that the people that do have addictions are looking for pills that meet that need that they have, and there’s always a chance that kids can get into them and experiment with the drugs that are there, and not really know what they’re taking.”
Any medications, including for pets, can be brought to the drop box during the work week."A lot of drugs remain in cabinets and lot of drugs get improperly disposed of, so by making it a program that is present during our regular business hours, it’s a lot more convenient for people to be able to bring in their unwanted and unused drugs.”
LaGesse says throwing pills in the trash or flushing them creates problems.
“Well, if it goes in the trash can, it ends up in our landfill, and then that water runs off through leech field, and is pumped to our wastewater treatment plant in much the same manner as if you flush those pills down the toilet. Those drugs end up unaltered at our wastewater treatment plant, and they’re not broken down by the processes that are used for sewage.”
LaGesse says the program is simple and confidential.
“We’d ask that they just leave them in the original container and black out the label on the container with a sharpie marker or similar and just drop them in the drop box, which is in our reception area.”
The drop box contents are eventually destroyed.
“We store them in our evidence and property room, and when we’ve compiled a large mass of them, we will work with the Sheriff’s Department to deliver them to a DEA-approved incinerator in Western Minnesota.”
The drop box is open Monday through Friday from 8:30 to 4:30. Needles, syringes, lancets and thermometers are not accepted.
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