“You can die just by touching this drug.” That was an alarm sounded Thursday from some of the state’s top officials about drugs containing fentanyl.
Four of the state’s top officials issued a sober warning that could potentially impact every Tennessean.
“Touching these substances in pill or powder form can be enough to kill you,” says TBI Director Mark Gywn.
Joined by the head of the Tennessee Highway Patrol, along with commissioners for health and substance abuse, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation director warned again about fentanyl-related illicit drugs all over the state.
He cited more urgent risks now with the drugs being made illegally at an alarming rate.
“We recently seized this machine during a drug case in our state that produces 10,000 or more pills in an hour,” says Gywn.
This warning was more even urgent because the fentanyl-related pills are getting more prevalent and potent daily.
“We have had a couple of significant drug stops where we have seized over 20-pounds of the drug,” says THP Col. Tracy Trott. “… And when you consider that 2-3 grams can kill you, 20-pounds is a very significant amount of this drug.”
Addicts might see the fentanyl-related drugs in dark corners, but the pills are seeing light in more common places, warns the state health commissioner.
“If you obtain one of these drugs on the street or at a party, be incredibly suspicious of it. This is different,” says Dr. John Dreyzehner.
Different because it can kill you quickly, is the elevated warning for just about everybody in Tennessee.
So what are the solutions? Just getting the word out is a start, say the state officials.