Interior Health has put Nelson, Salmo, Trail, and Castlegar all on Drug Alert due to potentially toxic drugs circulating the community, increasing the risk of a severe overdose.

Interior Health said any users should be getting their drugs checked at ANKORS or other drug checking services while the Drug Alert is in place.

MORE: Drug Checking Services (Interior Health)

The drug specifically in question is sold as “down” and is described by Interior Health as being a purple, blue, pink pebbly substance. The drugs reportedly contain “highly toxic amounts of fentanyl and benzodiazepines” and put users at risk of a severe overdoes.

Officially issued as of Friday, August 14th, the Drug Alert will remain in effect until Friday, August 21st.

Interior Health is offering the following advice in the wake of the Drug Alert:

  • Get your drugs checked
  • Avoid using different drugs at the same time or using drugs and alcohol together
  • Don’t use alone or ask someone to check on you
    • If you must use while alone, consider using the Lifeguard app which can connect you with 911
      emergency responders if you overdose
  • When using your substance start with a small amount, and then go slow
  • Use at an Overdose Prevention or Supervised Consumption Site, if one is near you
  • Know how to respond to an overdose – call 911, give rescue breaths and naloxone

Naloxone kits and training are available through ANKORS, Interior Health Public Health, and MHSU (Mental Health and Substance Use).

MORE: Toward the Heart Hard Reduction Site (Naloxone Programs)

MORE: Drug Alert for Nelson, Salmo, Trail, Castlegar (Interior Health)