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Press Release

Vaping Devices, Cartridges will be Accepted During Drug Take Back Day

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Middle District of Georgia

MACON, Ga. —The Drug Enforcement Administration’s (DEA) Atlanta Divisional Office will accept vaping devices and cartridges for the first time at any of its drop off locations during the 18th National Prescription Drug Take Back Day on Saturday, October 26, 2019 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. local time. This one-day event will make it convenient for the public to rid their homes of potentially dangerous prescription drugs. At the event, Georgians will be able to drop off their expired, unused and unwanted pills at sites across the state free of charge, no questions asked. By doing so, they will help prevent prescription drug abuse and theft. Georgians participating in the DEA’s last take-back held on April 27, 2019, yielded 11,114 pounds of unwanted or expired medications for safe and proper disposal at sites set up throughout the state. The public can find a nearby collection site at or by calling 800-882-9539.

“The disposal of unwanted/unused prescription medication is a common sense way to prevent medicine from being abused or diverted from its intended use.  I encourage all citizens to take advantage of this free service offered by the DEA,” said Charlie Peeler, the U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Georgia. “If your community does not have a nearby Take Back Day location, there are several year-round safe drug disposal sites located across the Middle District that citizens can seek out, including in courthouses, outside law enforcement offices and other locations. We all need to work together to end easy access to these highly addictive drugs.”

“DEA’s 18th Prescription Drug Take Back event will allow Americans to safely and properly dispose of their unwanted/unused prescription medications,” said Robert J. Murphy, the Special Agent in Charge of the DEA Atlanta Field Division. “During Saturday’s Take Back event, DEA is taking a proactive step by collecting vaping devices and cartridges as we work with our partners to combat this emerging public health threat to the nation’s youth.”

Vaping devices and cartridges will be accepted at any of the Georgia drop-off locations during National Prescription Drug Take Back Day. It is important to note that the DEA cannot accept devices containing lithium ion batteries. If batteries cannot be removed prior to drop-off, individuals should consult with stores that recycle lithium ion batteries. Concerns have been raised across the United States over illnesses and death caused by vaping and the high youth vaping initiation rates. In an effort to support a healthy lifestyle and energetic population, especially amongst America’s youth, the DEA is committed to doing all it can to help safely dispose of vaping devices and substances. 

Now in its tenth year, DEA has collected a total of more than 11 million pounds (almost 6,000 tons) of expired, unused and unwanted prescription medications through its Take Back Day events. DEA is continuing to register law enforcement partners and collection sites for the upcoming Take Back Day. As of Oct. 15, more than 4,500 registered law enforcement partners will assist with more than 5,250 registered sites and 135 tribal locations across the country, with more being added each day. Collection sites will be open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. local time. The public can find a nearby collection site at or by calling 800-882-9539.

For more information about the harms of youth vaping, please visit: The DEA also encourages parents, along with their children, to educate themselves about the dangers of legal and illegal drugs by visiting DEA’s interactive websites at, and

Questions can be directed to Pamela Lightsey, Public Information Officer, United States Attorney’s Office, at (478) 621-2603 or Melissa Hodges, Public Affairs Director (Contractor), United States Attorney’s Office, at (478) 765-2362.

Updated October 24, 2019

Prescription Drugs
Office and Personnel Updates