The director of the Iowa Division of Narcotics Enforcement (DNE) says a statewide effort to collect unused prescription drugs this past weekend took in 5,142 pounds of medication. D.N.E. director Kevin Frampton says over 85 agencies took part, and they had great success.

He says it’s a significant amount of prescription drugs and pills and says he was surprised that they took in over two-tons of drugs — which was twice as much as they took in last fall. The event was part of a nationwide effort by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration. Frampton says the drugs collected will go up in smoke.

The D.E.A. takes control of all the drugs and they get incinerated. Frampton says burning up the drugs is better than flushing them down the toilet and letting them get into the water system. And he says the abuse of prescription drugs by teens has been an increasing problem nationwide.

Frampton says a lot of teens feel the prescription drugs are a lot safer than illegal drugs, but he says taking prescription drugs that haven’t been prescribed for you is very dangerous and can even be fatal in some cases. Frampton says the success of this effort will likely lead to another drug take back.

He says they are discussing having another take back day, and it will probably be sometime in the fall. Frampton says they do not keep track of the individual types of drugs that are turned in, they are all handed over together to the D.E.A. for disposal.