Ottawa police say cocaine seized this summer contained fentanyl, the first time they've confirmed the presence of the potentially deadly opioid mixed in other street drugs.
The cocaine sample, seized by a patrol officer in early July 2016, was sent to Health Canada for analysis and the results were returned last week, police said.
It is the first Health Canada certificate of analysis confirming fentanyl's presence in another street drug, police said.
Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid doctors prescribe to help patients manage chronic pain. It's estimated to be 80 times more powerful than morphine and hundreds of times more powerful than heroin, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Fentanyl has also been linked to an increase in overdoses across the country, and health agencies have warned it's commonly cut into other street drugs to make them more potent. An amount equivalent to two grains of salt can kill a healthy adult.
"As always, police and Ottawa Public Health are advising that the best way to avoid an unintended overdose is by not using illegally obtained substances," police said in a statement released Thursday.
"No amount of supervision can ensure a person's safety when they choose to use illegal drugs. That is even more so when there is no reliable way for the user or the supervisor to confirm what drug is actually being ingested," police said.
In August Health Canada put forth a proposal to ban six chemicals used in the production of fentanyl, following the lead of a bill with the same aim put before the Senate by current Senator and former Ottawa police chief Vern White.
The public comment period for that proposal ended earlier this month.
Latest USA News
- Sharing stories from here, our home
- Refugee's success shows potential of young newcomers
- Ready to launch
- Private practice
- Ferry held hostage until First Nation's problems addressed
- Blue stroll over watered-down Esks
- Time, fire erase last visible ties to community builder
- Former gridiron standout Idonije writes stories encouraging youngsters to be the best they can be
- Former attorney general Roland Penner dead at 93
- Playbook: Caps take 2-1 Cup series lead, Tkachuk a hot NHL prospect, Tiger lurking at Memorial and more...
- Mental illness cited in deaths of Steinbach father and son
- Brrrrr-utal! Spring temperatures likely weeks away
- Wheeler, muckers lead way to victory
- Civil trials moving at brisker pace
- Taking a stand against harassment
- City eyes traffic lights at site of fatal collision
- Winnipeg has love affair with horror
- Waste not, want not
- A valuable space, lost in litigation
- Free Press Head Start for April 3
- Secret life of plants making music
- Ex-Hydro chairman refutes premier
- Wire-to-wire world champ
- Optimism shines bright at upbeat Juno Awards show in Vancouver
- Canada joins U.S., Europe in expelling Russian spies for British poison attack
- Feds ease restrictions on prescription heroin to address opioid epidemic
- Mexico official: Iowa family died from water heater gas leak
- White House: Trump thinks Stormy Daniels lied about threat
- Developer to alter Pembina Highway apartment plans
- It's a great time to be a sports fan in Winnipeg
- He has the answers
- Manitoba announces operators of legal cannabis stores
- Feds to help Churchill residents pay high cost of gas
- Journalism still necessary in Canada: survey
- Getting into the weeds
- A call for justice
- Family, friends gather to protest reduced sentences for young offenders convicted of killing Serena McKay
- Two people dead in fatal trailer fire in Grand Rapids
- 200 mourners attend funeral for boy killed at crosswalk
- Jets penalty killing third-best in the league