RIVERTON, WY — Local officials and law enforcement are warning residents about a dangerous and deadly uptick in drug-related incidents including fentanyl and opioids. Through response to emergency calls, Fremont County law enforcement is seeing a surge in the need for Narcan usage and, sadly, two deaths since June 2021.
“Recreational use of fentanyl is deadly, simply put; street use of this substance substantially increases the likelihood of sudden death. It is not if it will happen it’s when,” says Fremont County Sheriff, Ryan Lee.
According to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), fentanyl is a synthetic opioid that is 80-100 times stronger than morphine. Pharmaceutical fentanyl was developed for pain management treatment of cancer patients. Because of its powerful opioid properties, Fentanyl is also diverted for abuse. Medications should only be taken as prescribed by your physician and never trust medication that is bought or sold from someone other than your pharmacy. How it affects each individual varies and just one pill has the potential to be lethal.
“In June, the Fremont County Coroner’s Office responded to two confirmed fentanyl deaths. As recreational use of this drug continues, we anticipate more but are hopeful that the community understands how deadly it can be,” says Erin Ivie, Chief Deputy Coroner.
The Fremont County Prevention Program has partnered with local law enforcement, public entities, and organizations to create awareness of this deadly crisis. To support this effort, a website page dedicated to education and resources can be found at fremontcountyprevention.com/fentanyl.
If you or anyone you know is actively struggling with drug addiction or mental health concerns, please find help and resources at fremontcountyprevention.com.