Police department has a new weapon to battle drug problem

Laurel County has a new tool for fighting prescription pill abuse.

Prescription pill collection days have been going on for awhile, but now people will have around-the-clock access for disposing of their unwanted medications before they fall into the wrong hands.

Previously, people had to wait until a designated pill collection day, but now they can dump their meds here at the London Police Department 24/7.

“When a family member passes away, sometimes after a prolonged illness, what do you do with all the medications. A lot of times there are pain medications and other things people want to get their hands on and use in an inappropriate way,” Rebecca Patton said.

Officials from the Public Health Department and Operation UNITE are teaming up to try and install one of these units in every county of Kentucky's fifth congressional district.

“History has shown us that most children's first encounter with drugs was through their parent's medicine cabinets. So it's vitally important that if you have unused, unwanted medications, that you bring them to these facilities like we installed here today in London,” Dan Smoot said.

The London Police Department is open weekdays from 9-5, but the lobby, where the pill disposal unit is now located, is open 24/7.

Officials will check the unit from time to time and when it gets full, they will haul the unwanted medications away to be burned.

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