Police are concerned about a new strain of fentanyl they discovered at the scene of an overdose incident in Newmarket.
York Regional Police say they’ve never seen fentanyl like this before. The fentanyl had a “distinctive” orange and pink colouring.
Police say the drug was consumed with nicotine oil through a vape pen.
“This could pose a significant risk to public safety, especially if residents are unaware of this consumption method and assume a vape pen they may use contains nothing more than nicotine or other flavourings,” police said in a news release.
Numbers released this week show overdose deaths in Ontario rose 38 per cent in the last year.
There were about 40 suspected opioid overdose calls in a single night last month in Toronto.
The opioid problem has been intensifying in Canada since the onset of the pandemic with fatal drug overdoses on the rise across the country.
Back in June, Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer, Dr. Theresa Tam called it an “increasing concern” and an “unintended negative consequence” from the pandemic response.
While pandemic restrictions have led to fewer people using safe injection sites, it also impacted the illegal supply of drugs coming into Canada.
Ontario’s coroner reported a 25 per cent increase in fatal overdoses from March to May 2020, compared with the same three-month period last year.
Numbers released this week show OPP officers have prevented 210 opioid-related deaths since they began carrying Naloxone kits three years ago.