Police chief says Fentanyl has changed the way first responders approach their jobs

Community

More than 100 people a year are experiencing drug overdoses in Wheeling.

Wheeling Police Chief Shawn Schwertfeger says many of the drugs on the street are laced with synthetics such as Fentanyl.

And he says those synthetic drugs have drastically changed the landscape.

“Fentanyl is of great concern,” said Chief Schwertfeger. “It has caused us to change police tactics in how we test narcotics. We have to have two officers–one as an observer–just so we don’t have an accidental overdose of a law enforcement officer.”

Fentanyl poses a high risk of addiction.

It can cause respiratory arrest when taken alone or with other substances including alcohol.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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