LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) – The Drug Enforcement Administration has released the official drug take back numbers for the spring 2018, where Arkansas came in well above fellow High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas.

These events have been held since 2010. A coalition led by the State Drug Director, the Attorney General, both Arkansas Districts of the U.S. Attorney’s Office and numerous political agencies, launched an ongoing education program to encourage everyone to “Monitor, Secure, and Dispose” their prescription medications. As part of the “Monitor, Secure, and Dispose” effort, the coalition organized Arkansas’s participation in the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration’s National Prescription Take-Back Initiative.

For the spring 2018 event, Arkansas placed thirteenth in the nation with 28,020 pounds of prescription drugs. Over all 15 events, Arkansas has placed third in the nation with a total collection of 291,674 pounds of prescription drugs, an average of 19,445 pounds per event.

Other HIDTA states [Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi] ranked well below Arkansas for all events held over the last eight years. Collectively, HIDTA states brought in 442,050 pounds through all 15 Take Back events, of which Arkansas accounts for 66 percent.

According to a press release from the State Drug Director, “Due to the commitment, dedication, and effort of the Arkansas Law Enforcement Community, its partners, and the multi-agency coalition, and due to excellent participation by Arkansans in all areas of the state, the take back events have been successful above and beyond all expectations. Altogether, the 15 Prescription drug take back events have produced the return of almost 146 tons of unneeded medications, estimated at 406.2 million pills.”

For more information on Arkansas Drug Take Back, click here.