The Jamestown Police Department and the Chautauqua County Sheriff's Office will participate in a Nationwide Prescription Drug Take-Back Day on Saturday.
The initiative - sponsored by the Drug Enforcement Administration - seeks to collect and destroy expired, unused or unwanted medications that may be abused or flushed down the toilet, contaminating the water table and eventually drinking water.
The drop-off will be from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the following locations: Chautauqua Mall parking lot (in front of JC Penney), Southside Plaza in Jamestown, Alstar Ambulance on Monroe Street in Dunkirk and Westfield Family Physicians on Main Street in Westfield.
The service is free and anonymous.
"Prescription drug abuse, misuse and accidental poisoning are a critical problem within our community," said Joseph Gerace, Chautauqua County sheriff. "The Nationwide Prescription Drug Take-Back Day is an excellent program to rid our community of these potentially dangerous drugs and have it done with no adverse impact on our environment."
The JPD also announced the installation of a permanent drug collection drop-box in the department's reception area.
The public can access the box 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and drop off a wide variety of unwanted medications including prescription medications, controlled substances, over-the-counter-medications, pet medications, vitamins and supplements, medicated ointments, lotions, creams, oils and liquid medications in leak-proof containers.
The program does not accept needles, syringes, thermometers, IV bags, bloody or infectious waste, personal care products, empty containers or hydrogen peroxide.
Pharmacies and medical providers are not permitted to participate in the program.
According to the DEA, death by overdose is the No.1 cause of accidental death, surpassing car accidents for the first time since 1979 when drug overdose statistics starting being tallied.