Drug drop boxes discontinued because of safety hazard

Local News

People put hypodermic needles in drug drop box

HOOPESTON, Ill. (WCIA) — The police department and city hall are no longer going to have drug drop boxes available for expired prescriptions to be discarded. The drug drop box was installed about four years ago after the former chief of police enrolled in a program through Caremark to have the drug drop box available.

Within the last year, they noticed a problem with people dropping hypodermic needles in the boxes, putting those who recover the material at risk. A Hoopeston police officer is responsible for helping to dispose of the prescriptions. About a year ago, he was hurt by a needle while disposing of the drugs. The officer is okay, but needles have been placed in the box on other occasions. They’re stopping use of the drug drop box to make sure others aren’t putting their health at risk.

The change is effective immediately. If people need to dispose of needles, they can find a sharps or syringe disposal location. Another option, the Environmental Protection Agency recommends people put sharper needles or syringes in a sharps container and double bag before throwing it away.

Although this Hoopeston location is stopping drug box use, the Vermilion County Health Department has several other locations listed where people can dispose of prescriptions and sharps.

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