Published: 10/08/2022



October 8, 2022



Monique Cisneros

Public Information Specialist

Community Services Bureau

[email protected]

(951) 826-5544




RIVERSIDE, CA – The Riverside Police Department, along with other law enforcement agencies around the nation, will be participating in the Drug Enforcement Administration’s “National Prescription Drug Take Back Day” on Saturday, October 29, 2022. 


In partnership with Kaiser Permanente Riverside Medical Center, a drive-thru and drop off collection site will be set up across from the medical center at 3660 Park Sierra Drive from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.  Expired, unused, and/or unwanted pharmaceuticals will be collected and turned over to the DEA for safe destruction.  The event is free, anonymous, and with no questions asked.


The purpose of this program is to provide a safe, convenient, and responsible means of disposing prescription drugs, while also educating the public about the potential abuse of medications.  In addition to prescription drugs, each site will also allow for the safe disposal of E-cigarettes and vape pens ONLY after the batteries have been removed from the device.  Additionally, needles and syringes will not be collected at this event.


The “National Take Back Initiative” (NTBI) seeks to prevent pill abuse and theft through the collection of potentially dangerous and expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs.  The Riverside Police Department is once again collaborating with Kaiser Permanente Riverside Medical Center and will be collecting these types of drugs for proper disposal. 


Drug overdose deaths are up 16 percent in the last year, claiming more than 290 lives every day.  According to a report published by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, a majority of people who misused a prescription medication obtained the medicine from a family member or friend. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that in the United States, more than 106,000 people died as the result of a drug overdose in the 12-month period ending November 2021, marking the most drug-related deaths ever recorded, with opioid-related deaths accounting for 75 percent of all overdose deaths.  Studies show that a majority of abused prescription drugs were obtained from family and friends. 


To help combat the continued vaping health crisis across the country, we will also be collecting vaping pens and cartridges at our collection site.  Through discussions with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the DEA has determined that vaping pens without the internal batteries are considered household hazardous waste, the exact same waste designation as the collected pharmaceuticals and can therefore be co-mingled with those NTBI materials.  Pens with batteries in them, however, are a different waste stream designation and, more importantly, are considered a potential fire hazard.  For those that have batteries that cannot be removed, the consumer is urged to call their local hazardous waste management facility or check with large electronic chain stores who may accept the devices for proper disposal.


For more information regarding the National Take Back Initiative, visit https://www.deadiversion.usdoj.gov/drug_disposal/takeback/index.html.