WHEELING, W. Va. (WTRF) — There is an overdose alert in the northern panhandle of West Virginia.

That’s a predictive response, based on a rash of overdoses in other areas that normally experience bad batches of drugs just before that occurs here.

They’re getting the word out in creative ways.

They had a clear presence Wednesday at the Soup Kitchen of Greater Wheeling.

This is a place where homeless people and those struggling with addictions often come to have lunch.

So the regional coordinator of the Office of Drug Control Policy was set up there, giving away free Narcan kits, and teaching people how to use them.

Overdose alert issued for West Virginia counties

“There are substances that people using drugs out there think don’t have fentanyl in them, or opiates in them, but they do,” said Martha Polinsky. “And I think that’s where a lot of these overdoses are coming from. Just arm yourself with the facts and the information and with Narcan. We’re trying to save lives here. People aren’t going to make it to treatment if they don’t live.”

Polinsky works out of YSS.

She talked to every person individually who said they wanted Narcan.

Some had addiction issues themselves, others had family or friends with addictions.

The overdose alert is for 23 counties in northern West Virginia.

It’s in place for 36 hours.