Woodbury adds drug collection site

Body: 

The Washington County drug collection program now includes a Woodbury location.

Residents can dispose of unused or expired prescription, over-the-counter and pet medications in the new collection box in the Woodbury Service Center, 2150 Radio Drive.

The Washington County Sheriff's Office and Department of Public Health and Environment partnered to launch the program in 2012. They have collected more than 34,000 pounds — the equivalent of four, half-ton pickup trucks — of discarded medications.

The new location is one of four throughout the county.

Washington County Sheriff Dan Starry said in a statement the program will offer "more convenience" to Woodbury residents who want to properly dispose of medications.

Starry said keeping unused or medication poses a risk for theft and drug abuse.

"We certainly have seen cases where people have gone into medicine cabinets or places such as that where grandparents may have extra pills around," he said. "Or they'll break into homes looking for prescription pills."

It can also lead to accidental poisoning if a new prescription is improperly combined with an old prescription.

Disposal methods like flushing medications down the toilet can pollute water and harm wildlife.

Washington County takes all drugs collected to a waste-to-energy facility that is licensed to burn this type of waste.

How to dispose of drugs:

Residents can anonymously deposit unused or unwanted drugs in one of the county's designated drop boxes between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Medications can be left in their original container or in a small bag.

Locations:

• Cottage Grove Service Center, 13000 S. Ravine Parkway

• Forest Lake Service Center, 19955 N. Forest Lake Road.

• Stillwater Law Enforcement Center, 15015 N. 62nd St.

• Woodbury Service Center, 2150 Radio Drive

More information is available at www.co.washington.mn.us/meds.