New Bern -

September the 29th is National Prescription Drug Take Back Day.

Pharmacies and law enforcement agencies are getting involved in collecting unused and expired drugs.

"Prescription drug abuse and misuse has become an epidemic in our country," Carol Mattocks said. Mattocks is a chair for the Coastal Coalition of Sustance abuse Prevention. "In our population there's a lot of pain medications out there that are expired and could fall into the wrong hands."

That's one of the focuses of drug take back days, to get addictive and often abused types of medication off of the streets. Examples include Oxycodone or Morphine.

Every year, hundreds of pounds are collected at each location across the country.

"What happens is if we don't get them off of the street, they may improperly dispose of them. They may flush them down the toilets, or throw them in the trash," Mattocks said.

Once collected, law enforcement take and dispose of the drugs through incineration.

The event was supposed to run from 10 a.m., but people showed up to a New Bern location as early as 9 to drop off drugs.