PROVIDENCE, R.I. — Authorities say Rhode Island residents turned in nearly two tons of prescription drugs during the annual Prescription Drug Take Back Day.

The U.S. attorney’s office said this week that 3,825 pounds of expired, unused and unwanted prescription drugs were turned in at collection points across the state on Oct. 28, which is a 50 percent increase over last year’s collection.

The event aims to reduce misuse and abuse of the medication, especially opioid painkillers.

New England turned in a record 48 tons of prescription drugs during this year’s event, with Maine leading the pack at over 41,500 pounds.

The program started in 2010. About 4,500 tons of prescription drugs have been collected since then nationwide.

The next Prescription Drug Take Back Day is April 28.

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