Several Regional Sites Make It Convenient to Drop Off Medications for Safe Disposal
Tennessee American Water is encouraging residents to participate in the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency’s (DEA) National Prescription Drug Take Back Day this coming Saturday, October 28, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Eastern time zone. Customers are encouraged to drop off unwanted medications at approved regional collection sites for incineration, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) recommended manner of disposing most pharmaceuticals. Flushing medications down the toilet and throwing them in the trash are discouraged.
The biannual Drug Take Back provides residents the opportunity to rid their homes of expired, unused, and unwanted medications. Residents may simply drive to one of the 18 area drop-offs on Saturday, to properly dispose of the medications free and anonymously. Regional Drug Take Back Day collection sites can be located here on the Hamilton County Coalition’s Facebook event. Sites are accepting both prescription and over-the-counter medications as well as vape pens or other e-cigarette devices.
Lori Stenzel, Tennessee American Water manager of water quality and environmental compliance, explains, “Everyone can make a difference and protect our water sources by simply cleaning out their medicine cabinets. We hope residents participate in Take Back Day to dispose of unwanted medications safely and help prevent medications from entering our waterways. Participation also helps to prevent unwanted medications from misuse and is a much safer alternative than flushing or throwing them away.”
Participating counties include Hamilton, Sequatchie, Rhea, Grundy, Polk and Marion. Counties in the Central time zone will hold their drug take back events from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. local time.
Through partnership and collaboration with the Hamilton County Coalition, local pharmacies, environmental stewards, police departments and government agencies, Tennessee American Water helps to bring awareness to the proper disposal of medications to prevent misuse and abuse of medications while protecting local water sources.
Residents who are unable to participate Saturday are encouraged to use local, permanent community pharmaceutical sites. Year-round prescription dropbox locations can be found on the Hamilton County Coalition’s interactive map.