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Medication disposal container added at West Lafayette Police Station

| March 2, 2018

West Lafayette Police Chief Stephen Klopfenstein is pictured with the new safe medication disposal container that was installed at the station. Josie Sellers | Beacon

WEST LAFAYETTE – West Lafayette residents now have a safe and environmentally friendly way to dispose of unwanted or expired medications.

The safe medication disposal container was installed in the lobby of the West Lafayette Police Station.

“This gets old medications out of people’s homes and prevents them from possibly getting into the hands of children,” said West Lafayette Police Chief Stephen Klopfenstein. “If you put your pills in the trash, once that is out at the curb, anyone could go through it and if you flush them down the toilet you are polluting the water and the system. This is just a much safer way to dispose of them.”

Accepted items include common dosage forms, such as tablets capsules, ointments and patches of prescription medications and over-the-counter medications. Illegal drugs, needles, lotions or liquids, inhalers, aerosol cans, thermometers and hydrogen peroxide are not to be placed in the disposal container.

“We just suggest that you scratch your name off of the bottle or take the label with it off before placing it in the container,” Klopfenstein said. “There is a liner inside the container and once it fills up we take it out, weigh the bag and make arrangements for it to be destroyed.”

The container was made possible by The Rite Aid Foundation and its KidCents program.

“They provided everything,” Klopfenstein said. “The labels and the liner were all there and it was all ready to go.”

The safe medication disposal container is available to the public when the police station’s lobby is open. If the lobby is locked call the number on the door, 740-545-6324, and an officer will arrange to meet you at the station.

The Coshocton County Sheriff’s Office also has a disposal container for medications for two years now. It’s located in the office’s lobby and accessible to the public 24/7, 365 days a year.

“We will take pretty much anything,” said Lt. Dean Hettinger. “The county bought its own incinerator so we don’t really specify. If it is needles we just ask that they are in something safe like a sharps container and that things are left in the original prescription bottle or pill container and things are sealed well. We’ve even found illicit narcotics in there. We aren’t going to discriminate if someone wants to rethink a decision or change their life.”

He added that personal information from any labels does not necessarily have to be removed.

“It’s only myself and another deputy that empties the container and we take it right to the incinerator,” Hettinger said. “We’ve also partnered with West Lafayette and will dispose of what they collect.”

The sheriff’s office has fielded a lot of questions over the years about how to properly dispose of medications and Hettinger said the take back box has been a huge success for them.

“We’ve taken in thousands of pounds of medications at this point,” he said.



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Category: People & Places

About the Author ()

I started my journalism career in 2002 with a daily newspaper chain. After various stops with them, I am happy to be back home! I graduated from Coshocton High School in 1998 and received a Bachelor of Arts in Communication in 2002 from Walsh University. I also earned several awards while working for daily papers, including being honored by Coshocton County’s veterans for the stories I wrote about them. I am honored and ready to once again shine a positive light on Coshocton County. I also am the proud mother of a little girl named Sophia!

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