MIAMI (CBSMiami) — The opioid crisis is not only dangerous for those addicted to the drugs, but also for first responders.
An Ohio police officer is back on the job following an accidental overdose from street Fentanyl after a drug bust. The DEA says it is 40 to 50 times more powerful than street heroin.
“As I walked through the door, I was pulled back by an alert colleague, another officer, what’s’ this white powder’….that’s when I reached back and accidentally came in contact,” said Officer Chris Green.
Just a few hours earlier, Officer Green was helping arrest two men on alleged drug charges who were in a car. Some white powder was on the floor. Officer Green doesn’t know how some of that powder ended up on his sweatshirt and then on his fingertips but that’s all it took.
“I fall backwards and I’m trying, trying to hold on to anything I can grasp,” said Green.
Luckily, EMT’s were already at the police station. Officer Green was given one dose of the opioid antidote Naloxone and then rushed to the hospital where he received three more doses. That’s a total of four doses for simply touching it and/or inhaling it.
Chris’s fiance — Stacy Birch –knows he has a dangerous job, but worried more about bullets than drugs. When asked if she thought she’d run into this, she said ‘absolutely not.’
“My worst fear is getting shot….him getting shot,” said Birch.
Fentanyl, especially in powder form, is so dangerous and now spreading across the country so fast that the DEA made a video warning police and emergency responders of the risks.
“As long as this stuff is on the streets our men and women and first responders are going to be bumping into it and it’s extraordinarily dangerous for them,” said Rosenberg.
“When you hear about these stories, you think that’s only on TV….that’s on TV, that’s not gonna happen to me that’s not gonna happen to me…No, I’m telling you this drug has no…it doesn’t care who it kills,” said Green.
Officer Green said the suspects admitted the powder was Fentanyl. This happened on Friday and he was off Saturday, Sunday and Monday. He was back to work on Tuesday and never missed a day of work.