WSSC to Participate in DEA’s Drug Take Back This Saturday, April 30

Help Keep Our Waterways and Local Water Supply Free of Drug Contamination

| News Release



Laurel – April 27, 2016 – This Saturday, April 30, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., WSSC will be accepting unwanted prescription and over-the-counter medications for proper and safe disposal. WSSC will be one of about 70 locations throughout Maryland supporting the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration’s (DEA) National Prescription Drug Take Back Day.

WSSC is again supporting the nationwide DEA initiative to promote safe disposal of drugs and convey the impact of drugs on our nation’s water supply. The presence of such drugs in WSSC’s drinking water sources are not currently a concern, but beyond a doubt, the safe disposal of drugs has nationwide benefit, and is crucial to preserving the quality of our local water source.

The service is free and anonymous. WSSC’s police force will be accepting prescription and over-the-counter drugs at its headquarters: 14501 Sweitzer Lane, Laurel, MD 20707. To find the nearest medication disposal site, visit

For those who can’t make it to the take-back locations this Saturday, a list of permanent, secure disposal locations in the region is posted at

The initiative is being promoted in the National Capital Region by the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments (MWCOG) and regional partners, including law enforcement agencies, water utilities and health officials.

In cities and towns with sewer systems that connect to a wastewater treatment plant, prescription and over-the-counter drugs poured down the sink or flushed can eventually pass into rivers and lakes. For septic tanks, prescription and over-the-counter drugs flushed down the toilet can leach into the ground and seep into groundwater. The potential environmental and health consequences of prescription and over-the-counter drugs in drinking water sources are continuously being studied by state and federal environmental and health regulatory agencies.

With the exception of controlled substances, many unwanted medicines can be discarded with household trash by following the instructions below. If you are unsure if your medication is a controlled substance, consult a licensed pharmacist or check local laws to determine if trash disposal is an option. If so,

1. Take your prescription drugs out of their original containers.

2. Mix drugs with an undesirable substance, such as cat litter or used coffee grounds.

3. Put mixture into a disposable container that can be sealed, like a plastic bag.

4. Conceal or remove any personal information on empty containers, including Rx number, by covering it with permanent marker or scratching it off.

WSSC Water is the proud provider of safe, seamless and satisfying water services, making the essential possible every day for our neighbors in Montgomery and Prince George’s counties. We work to deliver our best because it’s what our customers expect and deserve.

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