Today is National Drug Take Back Day

A great opportunity to get ride of those unwanted medications in your home.
Published: Oct. 29, 2022 at 10:18 AM AKDT|Updated: Oct. 29, 2022 at 11:26 AM AKDT
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FAIRBANKS, Alaska (KTVF) - If left over, unused, or unwanted medication is taking up too much space in your medicine cabinet, there is an opportunity to rid your home of those unwanted medications this weekend.

Law enforcement officers in the Fairbanks and North Pole area are ready for National Drug Take Back Day, which is today, Saturday, October 30.

This national campaign gives those with unused medications an opportunity to dispose of them safely. Corporal Doug Welborn from the Fairbanks Police Department adds, “As opposed to putting them in the trashcan or in a landfill or something like that where dogs or cats or pets can get into them.”

Overdoses can happen to anyone regardless of age. From juveniles to elderly residents, misusing medications can have serious effects and sometimes result in death.

“It is amazing the amount of medication that folks will find in their homes that have been expired for a number of years and they have been trying to get rid of them but haven’t,” says Welborn.

Drug Take Back Day isn’t limited to prescription medications. Those who want to dispose of over the counter medications and even liquid medications are able to do so at this event.

Welborn explains, “So they can bring us pretty much anything. We are targeting those prescription medications that typically lead to overdoses but even over the counter medications can do the same in large quantities to get all of those disposed of if we can.”

There’s no need to remove labels or worry about personal information being seen. It goes into the box with no questions asked and then is incinerated with the labels on. “The drug enforcement agency will receive all these medications, nothing is opened, everything is fully incinerated,” adds Welborn.

Chief Dutra with the North Pole Police Department says the idea of Drug Take Back Day is to keep drugs off the streets and out of people’s homes. That way there is no misuse or abuse and that can happen in many different ways.

“Come on in, drop your medications in the box, no questions asked, and you don’t even have to say anything, you can come in drop it in the box and leave. It is a safe and effective way for people to get rid of those drugs,” says Dutra.

Medications can be discarded at Fairbanks Police Department, The North Pole Police Department and at the Alaska State Trooper Post.

If you are unable to make the event, there is a permanent location open year-round at the Fairbanks Police Department, located at 911 Cushman St., to drop off unwanted medications.