California American Water urges Los Angeles residents to properly dispose of pharmaceutical waste.

West coast water district California American Water has designated the week of Nov. 9, 2009, as “No Drugs Down the Drain Week” for its Los Angeles service area as part of a national campaign sponsored by public and private agencies to reduce pharmaceutical pollution in source water supplies.

Items like aspirin, prescription drugs and other medications should never be thrown down the drain or toilet, the utility says. They can often seep into the ground and find their way back into the water supply.

According to California American Water’s Los Angeles district managerGarry Hofer, water utilities treat drinking water to ensure it meets or exceeds USEPA standards. “But the best water treatment is to prevent water pollution at the source,” says Hofer. “Environmental stewardship can begin right at home through how we use and dispose of old medicines as well as other hazardous items such as used motor oil and paint.”

California American Water’s Los Angeles County residents are encouraged to contact the County of Los Angeles’ Department of Public Works at 888/253-2652 or visitwww.888cleanla.comto find out where they can drop off expired or unwanted pharmaceuticals and other household items free of charge.

Source: California American Water