On Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. the Pine Bluff Police Department, Drug Enforcement Administration and other agencies statewide host a drug take back program. This will give the public another opportunity to prevent drug abuse and theft by ridding their homes of potentially dangerous expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs.

On Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. the Pine Bluff Police Department, Drug Enforcement Administration and other agencies statewide host a drug take back program. This will give the public another opportunity to prevent drug abuse and theft by ridding their homes of potentially dangerous expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs.

Law enforcement agencies across Arkansas will participate in the fourth statewide prescription drug take back. Area residents may drop off prescriptions at the following:

• USA Drug, 1401 E. Harding Ave., where Pine Bluff police will be stationed

• Brookshire’s, 2800 S. Hazel St., where the Jefferson County Sheriff’s deputies will be set up.

The service is free and anonymous, no questions asked.

Last April, Americans turned in 376,593 pounds — 188 tons — of prescription drugs at nearly 5,400 sites operated by the DEA and more than 3,000 state and local law enforcement partners.

Medicines that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse, and abuse. Rates of prescription drug abuse in the U.S. are alarmingly high, as are the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to these drugs, officials say.

Studies show that a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including from the home medicine cabinet. In addition, Americans are now advised that their usual methods for disposing of unused medicines — flushing them down the toilet or throwing them in the trash — pose potential safety and health hazards, officials say.