Milton PD turned in 126 pounds of unwanted drugs this Saturday, pictured above in boxes. (Photo courtesy of Milton Police Dept.)

Milton PD turned in 126 pounds of unwanted drugs this Saturday, pictured above in boxes. (Photo courtesy of Milton Police Dept.)

Milton residents helped the local police department remove 126 pounds of unwanted or expired prescription medications on Saturday, April 26 as part of the national Drug Take-Back Day.

The eighth annual event, organized by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, asks residents to turn in unwanted pills, no questions asked. Milton police hosted its event at Kinney Drugs. It had the sixth highest total in the county, which, as a whole, collected 1,403.5 pounds of drugs.

The statewide total was 3,340.9, just short of the record 3,429 achieved in October, Milton Cpl. Scott Philbrook said. Last year, the entire nation got rid of 324 tons of potentially dangerous drugs, which if left around, lend themselves to accidental ingestion, theft and misuse, the DEA says.

Nearly 6.8 million Americans abuse prescription drugs, almost twice the rate of those using cocaine, hallucinogens, heroin and inhalants combined, the 2012 National Survey on Drug Use and Health reported. More Americans died in 2010 from overdoses of prescription medications than from motor vehicle accidents, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says.

Surveys have found that most abused prescriptions are obtained from family and friends, including from the home medicine cabinet, the DEA says.

Other Vermont agencies collected the following, in pounds:

  • South Burlington PD – 245.2
  • Burlington PD – 179.4
  • Winooski PD – 156.6
  • Shelburne PD – 142.0
  • Essex PD – 128.5
  • Milton PD – 126
  • Williston PD – 103.4
  • VT National Guard – 99.8
  • Colchester PD – 89.4
  • Hinesburg PD – 68.8
  • Chittenden SO & VSP Williston – 47.2
  • Richmond PD – 17.2