MURPHY — The convenience of disposing potentially hazardous medications without worry of the drugs falling into the wrong hands or contaminating the water supply is further enhanced in Murphy as participants can do so without even leaving their cars, weather permitting.

The local Drug Take Back program, set from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, April 29, in which the Murphy Police Department accepts unwanted or expired prescription drugs for disposal, now includes the convenience of curbside drop-off, says Police Lt. Adana Barber.

“Participants can drive right up to our parking spots facing the Police Department’s entry and we will walk up and take the drugs from the driver or passenger without them exiting their vehicle,” she said. “There is one caveat, though. If the weather is not cooperating, we may not be able to offer that service.

The twice-a-year effort is designed to provide a place where unwanted or expired drugs can be safely and securely taken to remove them from circulation and to prevent them from being introduced into the water supply. Several fully-attended collection receptacles will be available to accept the drugs for eventual disposal. The service is free and anonymous. Police personnel will ask no questions as to the origin of the drugs.

Nevertheless, new or used needles, new or used syringes and full or empty pressurized inhalers will not be accepted. The last Drug Take Back event in the fall resulted in local residents bringing in more than 700 pounds of unused, unwanted, expired or unknown drugs, both prescription and over-the-counter variety.

“Accepting and disposing these drugs can prevent them from being abused,” she said. “Over 70 percent of people abusing prescription pain relievers get them through friends or relatives right out of the family medicine cabinet.”

Also, people who flush prescription drugs down their toilets or sinks may be placing the larger community at risk, since the contaminated wastewater may eventually find its way back into the system.

For more information on the program, residents may call (972) 468-4210 or send an email to Lt. Barber at