EPA/RVIPA 27th ANNUAL PRETREATMENT WORKSHOP Guy D. Walton Forensic Scientist (505) 823-4282 Albuquerque Police Department Crime Lab.
Recognizing the potential dangers of the large amounts of unwanted or unused prescription drugs in the community, the Albuquerque Police Department began the Household Pharmaceutical Disposal Program in March of 2010 http://www.cabq.gov/envhealth/coapharmdispproginst.html
Program Guidelines and Goals • Only pills are accepted – no liquids, gels, or pastes • Doctor prescribed and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, herbal • supplements, and pet medications • Proper disposal protects children and pets from accidental poisoning • as well as teenagers and adults from misusing and abusing • medications • Proper disposal also protects the environment
Items the Program Cannot Accommodate • Liquids or syringes • Chemo or medical waste • Inhalers or other personal care items • Prescriptions on the EPA “P” or “U” List • (some chemo materials, blood thinners, • epinephrine, nicotine, etc)
Instructions for Drop-Off • Remove all medications from their original containers including pills in • foil and place them in a sealable bag • Call the Metropolitan Forensic Science Center to ensure staff availability • at (505) 823-4200 • Take items to the Metropolitan Forensic Science Center on Thursdays • between 9am-4pm
Public drop off at the Metropolitan Forensic Science Center
The Program began in March of 2010 and continues to the present In the first two days, nearly 25 pounds of material was collected: March 26, 2010 11067.8 24.4 18446.3 0.6
By October of 2010, nearly 280 pounds of material had been collected in conjunction with DEA: APD’s total intake (October 2010) = 132 lbs (approx. 97,637 pills) In conjunction with DEA collection, the program (October 2010) as a whole had collected 276 lbs (Approx. 213,144 pills) In October, this batch of material was taken by DEA for proper disposal because the department did not have the proper certification for non-evidentiary destruction of pharmaceuticals.
Through May of 2011, the total material collected for the Police Department’s Household Pharmaceutical Disposal Program was as follows: DateWt (g)Weight (lbs)Est. No. PillsWt (g)/Pill May 2011 208,338.5 459.3 347,225.8 0.6 All of the tablets collected between October 2010 and May 2011 were also taken by DEA for disposal.
The Albuquerque Police Department was given permission to operate an incinerator for non-evidence items by Environmental Health on March 26, 2011. APD is currently using a Crawford Industrial Group crematory, model CB400 located in a secure area at the Crime Lab. It originally was purchased for the destruction of controlled substance evidence. The unit was installed in 2007 for approximately $48,000.
Albuquerque Police Department’s first “in-house” burn was conducted June 2011. Approximately 35lbs of tablets were incinerated.
All exhaust from the unit must be “smokeless” and “odorless.” This is done via a primary and secondary burn chamber system and an electronic exhaust gas scanner which monitors and controls clarity of exhaust gases. The unit can burn about 400 pounds per cycle at a temperature of 1600 degrees. Up to 90% of the total mass of tablets is burned during this process. Final waste is then properly disposed of in a land fill.
Guy D. Walton Forensic Scientist Albuquerque Police Department Crime Lab (505) 823-4282