Fentanyl found in local drugs
Fentanyl found in local drugs

The Treaty Three Police Service found oxycodone pills cut with fentanyl in the Shoal Lake #39 First Nation area in August, and are warning residents of the associated risks.
The Treaty Three Police Service has confirmed the presence of fentanyl in local drugs, and are warning the public to be aware that imitation drugs are being sold in the area. Consuming the affected drugs could be fatal.

The police service says the illegally-possessed prescription medication was found in Shoal Lake #39 First Nation in August. Pills collected by officers at the time were identified as being oxycodone, and were analyzed by Health Canada to confirm.

Police say that drug dealers add illegally obtained fentanyl to other drugs they sell – like cocaine and counterfeit oxycodone tablets – as a cutting agent to increase their profits. That activity is increasing the number of overdoses and deaths.

A report from the Canadian Institute for Health Information shows that youth aged 15 – 24, and adults aged 25 – 44 had the fastest growing opioid poisoning rates. Studies also show that two Ontarians die every day from a fentanyl overdose.

Fentanyl is roughly 100 times more potent than morphine, and about 40 times more potent than heroin. A lethal dose of pure fentanyl is as little as two milligrams. That’s the equivalent of 32 grains of table salt.
Symptoms of fentanyl exposure can include:

- Difficulty walking, talking or staying awake,
- Blue lips or nails,
- Very small pupils,
- Cold and clammy skin,
- Dizziness and confusion,
- Extreme drowsiness,
- Choking, gurgling or snoring sounds,
- Inability to wake up, even when shaken or shouted at,
- Slow, weak or not breathing.

Police are urging the public to immediately report an overdose, and to call 911. Anyone with any information is asked to call the Treaty Three Police Service at 807-548-5474, the OPP at 1-888-310-1122, or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS).

If unknown substances are located, members of the public are asked to take necessary precautions in handling the substance, including wearing gloves and a mask. Police are also urging citizens to dispose of their expired or unused medication by contacting their local pharmacy.

In August 2017, Ontario announced a strategy to provide relief to those affected by the opioid crisis, including adding more front-line-harm-reduction workers, expanding the supply of the overdose reversal drug naloxone, and creating rapid access addiction clinics in every region of the province. In total, Ontario is investing over $222 million over 3 years to enhance Ontario's Strategy to Prevent Opioid Addiction and Overdose.

Naloxone kits are distributed for free across Ontario. Naloxone blocks or reverses the effects of opioid medication, including extreme drowsiness, slowed breathing, or loss of consciousness.