SANATOGA PA – Say goodbye to 82 pounds worth of potential problems.
About a year ago, the Lower Pottsgrove Police Department installed a personal medications return box in the lobby of its lower level offices in the municipal building, 2199 Buchert Rd. It serves as a secure drop-off point for people who want to safely dispose of no-longer-needed or expired prescription drugs of all kinds that simply take up space in medicine cabinets.
A great deal of space, as it turns out, police Chief Michael Foltz told the Board of Commissioners. The department recently turned over 82 pounds of collected pills, capsules and other remedies to the federal Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) as part of that agency’s drug take-back initiative, he reported.
Medications languishing in a home are targets of opportunity for drug abusers, particularly young people, DEA statistics show. Disposing of them properly, it adds, eliminates the threat of illegal and dangerous use while protecting against environmental pollution.
Dealing with drug offenses remains one of the department’s biggest headaches. Of the 67 criminal violations Foltz said his officers handled during April 2014, the latest month for which statistics are available, more than 34 percent of them were drug-related.
Lower Pottsgrove was among several municipalities in the Greater Pottstown area to participate in the first drug DEA take-back day during September 2010. It was hugely successfully and Foltz, then the department’s second-in-command, joined other officers in personally welcoming residents who brought items for disposal.
It then participated in every semi-annual take-back campaign until last May. That’s when Foltz established the drop box and declared any and every day could be a take-back day.
The box is generally available Mondays through Fridays from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Any area resident, from Lower Pottsgrove or neighboring municipalities, can come into the station and drop their unused medications into the container without being questioned. No identification is required, and no official police reports are completed.
The disposal site is self-service. Foltz asks depositors to avoid disposing of any syringes, sharps, or liquid medications. Additional instructions are posted on the box.
Those unable to drop unused medications off during regular office hours can arrange to have an officer return to station if they are available. The officer will then permit you access to dispose of your unused medications. For more information, call the department at 610-326-1508.
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