Water Hazard Posed | Chemical & Engineering News
Volume 87 Issue 33 | p. 3 | Letters
Issue Date: August 17, 2009

Water Hazard Posed

Department: Letters

Most people dispose of prescription or over-the-counter drugs by flushing them down the toilet. People who seek to dispose of illicit street drugs are apt to flush them down, too, or throw them in a river, especially if they think that law enforcement is onto them.

Tossing drugs into a field can get them in the food chain. Most street drugs will survive boiling water to make coffee or tea or cooking. Detection limits for drugs or their metabolites in urine are in the low-nanograms-per-milliliter levels. Some are in the picogram-per-milliliter levels.

Getting a positive drug test can easily get you terminated, or mustered out of a Department of Transportation, law enforcement, or chemical job in this trace-of-a-trace chemical detection world we now live in. Beware.

Stanley J. Broskey
Holland, Pa.

 
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