New Jersey officials have identified a number of lethal brands of heroin in the wake of six recent heroin overdose deaths.
According to authorities, packages of drugs stamped with “Strike Dead,” “Taliban,” and “Power Hour” have been sold as heroin throughout New Jersey. These brands of illicit drugs reportedly contain a particularly strong, and dangerous, mixture of drugs.
An investigation into the source of the recent heroin overdose deaths was assisted by the Drug Monitoring Initiative (DMI). The DMI is a multistate, multi-agency program which includes agencies in New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania. The DMI facilitates the sharing of information so that the appropriate agencies can more easily identify dangerous mixes of drugs and then spread the word about the lethal drugs. According to New Jersey Acting Attorney General Jay Hoffman, the DMI is “a common sense, life-saving program that sounds the alarm when we identify lethal drug brands being peddled on our streets.”
Heroin and opioid abuse have resulted in the deaths of more than 5,000 people in New Jersey over the last decade. At the same time, the number of annual heroin-related deaths in New Jersey has risen dramatically from just 287 reported heroin deaths in 2010 to 741 heroin deaths in 2013.
NJ law enforcement is taking this problem very serious. Unfortunately, the dangerous mixes of heroin have made it more difficult for law enforcement to prevent heroin overdose deaths.
Many NJ police officers are equipped with Narcan, which is also known as naloxone. Narcan is a highly effective opioid antidote used by police and emergency responders to save New Jersey heroin overdose victims. However, Narcan has proven ineffective in preventing overdoses caused by the more dangerous mixtures of heroin.
Lack of awareness by drug users is another factor which has made it more difficult to combat heroin overdoses in New Jersey. Many users of the dangerous brands of heroin do not realize that the drugs are more likely to result in overdose deaths.
NJ authorities are optimistic that the recent warning issued about these lethal brands of heroin will give potential drug users the information they need to avoid heroin overdoses.
To learn more, read the NJ.com article entitled “Tainted Heroin Kills 6, N.J. Issues Warning About 3 Deadly Brands.”