Police link fentanyl to three deaths in Addison CountyFebruary 06,2014Staff Report
BURLINGTON - Health and public safety officials are warning heroin users that product sold as heroin and packaged in the same manner as heroin may instead contain pure fentanyl or fentanyl-laced heroin.
The Vermont Department of Health reported Thursady afternoon it has just confirmed the cause of three deaths in Addison County in January to be overdoses from pure fentanyl. Fentanyl is an opioid drug that is up to 50 times more powerful than heroin, and much deadlier.
"Heroin users may not know they are shooting up fentanyl, or they may not know just how deadly it is," said Health Commissioner Dr. Harry Chen. "Even a very small amount of pure fentanyl, just a few grains, can stop your breathing and kill."
Fentanyl generally is used intravenously in hospitals to treat pain.
Police said this week they are trying to develop information about the packaging source and distribution of the drug.MORE IN This Just In
- Most Popular
- Most Emailed
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: Capt. James Cook discovers and names Christmas Island, Brits develop and test H-bombs there in 1957-58; 100 years ago today, Christmas truce takes hold on Western Front in France, combatants observe the holiday.
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: Gen. Wm. T. Sherman concludes March to the Sea, secures Savannah, Ga., offers the city as Christmas gift to Pres. Lincoln; N.Y.'s Lincoln Tunnel opens in 1937; first gorilla born in captivity, Colo, celebrates 58th birthday today.
- TOMORROW'S HEADLINES TODAY: Brent Curtis reports on the probe into a city bar fight involving police officers; Vt. Yankee has its last media day event before final shutdown next week; Depot Park hosts annual vigil to raise awareness of plight of homeless.
- TOMORROW'S HEADLINES TODAY: Vermont Gas Systems puts Phase 2 on hold as the latest estimate for Phase 1 takes a 27 percent leap upward, to a total of $157 million; U.S. Attorney Tristram Coffin quits for job with private firm; police cite man in pot bust.
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: In 1972, Christmas bombing of North Vietnam ordered by President Richard Nixon, most lethal strikes of the war; in 1989, U.S. invades Panama to depose, arrest and charge Gen. Manuel Noriega with drug trafficking, racketeering.
- TOMORROW'S HEADLINES TODAY: Gov. Peter Shumlin announces demise of his single-payer health insurance initiative; convicted first-degree murderer Alan Prue sentenced to 50 years for killing teacher Melissa Jenkins; veterans chafed about park naming snub.