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TDEC, Google Maps team up to make it easy to find drug drop-off points

(TDEC) The Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC) today announced a partnership with Google Maps to help Tennessee citizens identify nearby locations to safely dispose of their unwanted pharmaceuticals. 

TDEC has worked with various stakeholders to make available 334 permanent collection bins for expired, unused or unwanted household medications across all 95 counties in Tennessee. Using Google Maps, Tennesseans can now type “drug drop off near me” or “medication disposal near me” to see those locations on Google Maps. 

“TDEC is at its best when it is partnering with other public and private organizations to find solutions to enhance services for Tennesseans,” said TDEC Commissioner David Salyers. “We appreciate this new partnership with Google and our shared commitment to keeping drugs out of our waterways and out of the wrong hands.” 

Flushing medications or draining drugs down a sink allows chemicals to enter streams or groundwater where they can affect drinking water and stream ecosystems. Wastewater treatment plants are not designed to adequately remove chemicals found in drugs. 

“Google is honored to partner with states including Tennessee to make it easier for Americans to safely dispose of unwanted medications, including those that are fueling the tragic opioid epidemic,” said Google User Safety Initiative Senior Counsel Michael Trinh. “With just a single search on Google, Americans can quickly find convenient disposal locations open year-round, and do their part to reduce the harmful health and environmental impacts of excess medications.” 

Medications accepted in the bins include liquid prescriptions, ointments, pills, over-the-counter medications and pet medications. For a map of bin locations statewide, visit http://tdeconline.tn.gov/rxtakeback/ 

The national Drug Enforcement Agency is also hosting a Drug Take-Back Day on April 27, and drop-off locations can be found here.

About Jim Harris

Jim Harris has been WYSH's News & Sports Director since 2000. In addition to reporting local news, he is the play-by-play voice for Clinton High School football, boys' and girls' basketball and baseball. Catch Jim live weekdays beginning at 6:20 am for live local news, sports, weather and traffic plus the Community Bulletin Board, shenanigans with Ron Meredith and more on the Country Club Morning Show on WYSH & WQLA. Jim lives in Clinton with his wife Kelly and daughter Carolina, his mother-in-law and cats Lucius and Oliver.

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