Danville Drug Take-Back Day nets 124 pounds of unwanted pills

Local and federal law enforcement officials collected 124 pounds of unwanted medications for safe disposal during a Drug Take-Back Day event in Danville on Saturday.

"I think the event was a success," Danville Police Chief Steve Simpkins said. "The drug take-back days are very important to community safety because of the high potential for abuse/theft of unused medication."

Danville Police teamed with the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration for the event, which aimed to raise awareness about the need to properly dispose of medications in order to help reduce the number of accidental poisonings, overdoses and abuse.

"I would just say that getting rid of unwanted or unneeded prescription medications is a good way to keep them from being abused," said Geoff Gillette, town public information coordinator. "Safe disposal of the drugs keeps them out of the landfill and encourages residents not to flush them down the toilet."


 +   Like this comment
Posted by C. R. Mudgeon
a resident of Danville
on Apr 30, 2014 at 10:02 am

I am curious about the safe disposal method used. Obviously the worst thing to do is to flush old pills down the toilet, where the medications then end up in wastewater that eventually finds its way to the ocean (or other bodies of water). But the article also states that the medicines don't end up in a local landfill. So what is done with them? Incineration might be OK, I suppose, although it's not inherently obvious that incineration would be preferable to having them go to a landfill. Or is it just some sort of a more "sealed" landfill?

(As an aside, it's not obvious to me that the landfill option would be all that bad. In theory, perhaps there is a potential issue with leaching into underground water supplies. But this seems (on the surface) to be highly unlikely to cause any actual harm, in light of what other things are in landfills.)

I'm not criticising the program - I am just trying to figure out what the recommended "safe disposal" method is...

 +   Like this comment
Posted by Geoff Gillette
a resident of Danville
on Apr 30, 2014 at 5:17 pm

Geoff Gillette is a registered user.

Hi C.R,

Thanks for the question. I checked with Chief Simpkins and, according to the Drug Enforcement Administration, all of the medications that are collected are incinerated.

Hope this helps.

Have a great night.


Geoff Gillette
Town of Danville
Public Information Coordinator
(925) 314-3336

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