Of­fi­cers hos­pi­tal­ized after ex­po­sure

Call to aid drug over­dose vic­tim may have ex­posed them to deadly fen­tanyl

The Southern Berks News - - LOCAL NEWS - By Mar­ian Den­nis mden­nis@21st-cen­tu­ry­media.com @Mar­i­anDen­nis1 on Twit­ter

NEW HANOVER » Two New Hanover po­lice of­fi­cers were taken to the hos­pi­tal Wednesday night, Oct. 4, after be­ing ex­posed to what po­lice be­lieve was car­fen­tanil, a deadly syn­thetic opi­oid.

Of­fi­cers re­ceived a call at ap­prox­i­mately 10:15 p.m. Wednesday for a re­ported over­dose on the 2200 block of Big Road near Hick­ory Park, po­lice said. Of­fi­cers quickly at­tended to the vic­tim but soon after be­came ill at the scene, po­lice said.

Both of­fi­cers, whose names were not re­leased, were taken to area hos­pi­tals for treat­ment and later re­leased. They have now been cleared for full duty.

Po­lice say they be­lieve the of­fi­cers were ex­posed to fen­tanyl or car­fen­tanil. Fen­tanyl is a pow­er­ful syn­thetic opi­oid that is sim­i­lar to mor­phine but is 50 to 100 times more po­tent. Car­fen­tanil is a de­riv­a­tive of fen­tanyl that comes in forms in­clud­ing pow­der, blotter pa­per, or spray, and can be ab­sorbed through skin or ac­ci­den­tal in­hala­tion. It is es­ti­mated to be about 10,000 times more pow­er­ful than mor­phine. The drug can be lethal in amounts less than one mil­ligram, ac­cord­ing to au­thor­i­ties.

Early Thursday morn­ing, The Mont­gomery County Haz­ardous Ma­te­rial team could be seen out­side the New Hanover Town­ship build­ing to de­con­tam­i­nate a po­lice car and sev­eral other items inside the build­ing.

Po­lice have not pro­vided an up­date on the sta­tus of the over­dose vic­tim.

Both of­fi­cers, whose names were not re­leased, were taken to area hos­pi­tals for treat­ment and later re­leased. They have now been cleared for full duty.

TOM KELLY III — FOR DIG­I­TAL FIRST ME­DIA

The Mont­gomery County Haz­ardous Ma­te­rial Team was called to the New Hanover Town­ship Build­ing Thursday morn­ing to de­con­tam­i­nate a po­lice car and other items inside the town­ship build­ing.

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