DEA reports seven mass fentanyl overdoses this year since January

by ian

Ian Patrick, FISM News


The fentanyl crisis in America continues to grow more worrisome by the minute, highlighted by a new memo from U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) Administrator Anne Milgram which suggests that there have been “at least 7 confirmed mass overdose events across the United States.”

The memo was issued to law enforcement agencies to warn them of the growing crisis.

“The DEA is seeing a nationwide spike in fentanyl-related mass-overdose events involving three or more overdoses occurring close in time at the same location,” Milgram writes. “In just the past two months, there have been at least 7 confirmed mass overdose events across the United States resulting in 58 overdoses and 29 overdose deaths.”

Milgram reportedly listed these seven overdose events which occurred in Florida, Texas, Colorado, Nebraska, Missouri, and Washington D.C. Many of the deaths in these events seem to be accidental, as Milgram writes they “thought they were ingesting cocaine and had no idea that they were in fact ingesting fentanyl.”

She describes these accidental deaths as “a frighteningly nationwide trend.”

Tragic events like these are being driven by fentanyl. Fentanyl is highly-addictive, found in all 50 states, and drug traffickers are increasingly mixing it with other types of drugs – in powder and pill form – in an effort to drive addiction and attract repeat buyers. These mass-overdose events typically occur in one of the following recurring scenarios: when drug dealers sell their product as “cocaine,” when it actually contains fentanyl; or when drug dealers sell fake prescription pills designed to appear nearly identical to legitimate prescriptions – such as OxyContin®, Percocet®, or Vicodin® – that are actually fake prescription pills containing fentanyl. This is creating a frightening nationwide trend where many overdose victims are dying after unknowingly ingesting fentanyl.

Milgram also states that fentanyl has become the driving force behind “the nationwide overdose epidemic,” citing DCD data showing that the 12-month period ending on October 2021 revealed 105,000 overdose deaths. Of these, “over 66% . . . were related to fentanyl and other synthetic opioids.”

She ends her memo with a list of tasks for the DEA, saying the agency is “working to trace mass-overdose events back to the local drug trafficking organizations and to the international cartels that are responsible for the surging domestic supply of fentanyl.”

Drug seizures at the border do show a worrying increase in the amount of fentanyl being trafficked into the United States.

FISM News reported on January 2022 numbers at the United States southwestern border, saying total drug seizures dropped by 1% from the month previous. Of those drug seizures, though, fentanyl seizures “skyrocketed by 57% between December and January” of this year.

A separate report cited Customs and Border Protection data concerning intercepted smuggled fentanyl for all of 2021. Comparing the data to numbers in 2020, CBP said that the amount of fentanyl “seized by CBP at international mail inspection facilities, sea, land, and air ports of entry, and by smugglers trying to sneak it across between the ports of entry was double last year’s fentanyl seizures.”