Nationally we are in the midst of an epidemic of heroin abuse. Here in Auburn Hills we are no exception – police are seeing it regularly. One was a traffic crash last week at Opdyke and University in which a driver was impaired due to heroin use. Here is another from Sgt Eftink from earlier this week:
BP 24/Brown-clerk called due to a private snow plow driver falling and vomiting outside. Driver was not responsive. AHFD administered Narcan and he became alert-heroin use admitted-transported by AHFD.
Heroin is a strong narcotic drug. It causes people to fall asleep regardless of what they are doing. Maybe you’ve seen the photo that went viral last year of the small boy in a vehicle with his grandmother and her boyfriend who had both “nodded off” related to their heroin use. A police officer was so disgusted when he found these people he took the photo. His chief made it public because he wanted people to see what we are seeing. It was taken in southern, rural Ohio. Here is more information on the symptoms of heroin use. http://americanaddictioncenters.org/heroin-treatment/signs/
Recently, I happened to talk to our former Deputy Director, Thom Hardesty who is now the administrator of the Oakland County Medical Examiner’s Office. He was telling me that they have seen a tremendous increase in the number of heroin overdose cases recently that were fatal. And many of them had previously been saved by use of Narcan one or more times. Oakland County Community Health has not yet published a total number of saves by all of Oakland County’s police and fire departments for 2015 but I’m certain it will be a shocking number. It all totals to a terrible problem.
There is help. If someone you know has an addiction problem here is a resource to contact: