ibusinesslines.com November 15, 2018

At Least Two Dozen People Overdosed in a Connecticut Park Today

17 August 2018, 08:31 | Melissa Porter

At Least Two Dozen People Overdosed in a Connecticut Park Today

A police officer speaks to a man walking on New Haven Green Wednesday Aug. 15 2018 in New Haven Conn. A city official said more than a dozen people fell ill from suspected drug overdoses on the green and were taken to local hospitals. (AP

At least 41 people reportedly overdosed at or near New Haven Green, a local park, between Tuesday and Wednesday, with some 25 overdoses occurring over a period of three hours Wednesday, CBS reports. Paramedics were stationed at the New Haven Green in CT, which borders part of Yale University.

The victims, who officials said ranged in age and demographic, were at times found in groups of four to six.

Thursday, Emergency Operations Director Rick Fontana said that only a few required admittance to the hospital, with more people being discharged or leaving before any treatment.

Testing from the federal Drug Enforcement Administration revealed that the drug in question is K2.

"Synthetic cannabinoids act on the same brain cell receptors as THC (delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol), the mind-altering ingredient in marijuana". "We also know this is happening nationwide". Fontana said a widely used anti-opioid-overdose drug given to some victims at the park did not seem to be effective, but the same drug did help some patients recover when given in higher doses at hospitals.

The station adds that three arrests have been made. City officials cautioned in a news release that the arrested person is not yet confirmed as "the perpetrator sought in these cases", but had a warrant against him for violating probation. Although there have been no deaths, at least two people suffered life-threatening symptoms, according to authorities.

A look at the scene of multiple overdoses in the area of a CT park on Wed., Aug. 15, 2018. "Some of the reactions of the patients in the emergency department would suggest that there was an opioid involved as well", Bogucki told reporters during a news conference Wednesday. Their symptoms included vomiting, hallucinating, high blood pressure, shallow breathing, semi-conscious and unconscious states, officials said.

New Haven Fire Chief John Alston Jr. said emergency crews were overwhelmed with "multiple" 911 calls about people who were experiencing overdose symptoms or were passed out on the New Haven Green just after 8 a.m. local time.

Paramedics and police officers remained at the park all day and are preparing for more overdoses. The additives boost the high, but can create a risky, sometimes deadly cocktail. I have spoken with Mayor Harp and assured her that the state remains committed and ready to assist their response efforts wherever needed.

Harp said that on Wednesday, "New Haven was on the front lines of a coast-to-coast struggle to combat the public health menace of illicit distribution and use of what appear to be tainted street drugs ..."

Emergency responders treated most of the victims with naloxone, which reverses the effects of the drug.

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