COLUMBUS, Ga. (WRBL) — The Muscogee County Sheriff’s Office (MCSO) and the Columbus Health Department partnered today for the Drug Enforcement Administration’s (DEA) National Prescription Drug Take Back Day. The goal: getting unused or expired prescription drugs off the streets across the Fountain City.

Fifty-three boxes were collected today with over one thousand pounds of drugs. Residents had the opportunity to pick up Narcan, the over the counter nasal spray which can be used in case of an opioid overdose or accidental exposure to fentanyl.

The National Center for Drug Abuse Statistics says 16.3 million people misuse prescriptions each year. The bi-annual event is apart of federal and local law enforcement’s commitment to the community.

People get a lot of pills from prescriptions that they have or from over-the-counter medication that they have and don’t need it anymore. You get a prescription and you take it for the amount of time that you need it, and then you just need to get rid of it. And we do not want those pills to go into the waterways or you to dispose of them down your toilet. So just hold on to them and we’ll get rid of them this way.

Sgt. Jaqueline Hodge, MCSO

During the spring drug takeback, over 300 tons of unused medications were collected at thousands of collection sites across the United States. That total includes nearly 1,700 pounds collected in the Columbus area

For those who missed the drug take back event, residents can turn in expired or unused prescription drugs at two collection sites in the Fountain City. There is a collection box at the City Service Center and on the fourth floor of the Government Center. Both are available throughout the year.