Department celebrates thousands of drugs destroyed

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OKLAHOMA CITY—The Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics says in the two years since implementing a drug disposal program, officers have destroyed nearly 30,000 pounds of unwanted medications.

In March of 2011, OBN began installing permanent take-back boxes in the lobbies of police departments for the public to dispose of unwanted medication.obn

So far, 126 boxes have been installed in cities across the state.

Mark Woodward, OBN spokesman, said, “Prescription drug abuse is an epidemic in Oklahoma. It’s unnecessary and unsafe to leave outdated drugs in the house. Old, expired medications left in the home can be targeted by users. Teenagers also target their parent’s current or expired prescription drugs to abuse, trade or sell in order to obtain alcohol, marijuana or other drugs.”

Woodward says the department has a partnership with Covanta Energy in Tulsa to safely destroy the drugs collected from the disposal boxes at no cost to the state.

The waste material is then converted into clean energy.

In fact, the partnership earned the Henry Bellmon Award for Excellence in 2012.