May 2, 2016 2:08 PM

UPDATE: Drug 100x more powerful than fentynal could be to blame for recent NH overdoses

PLAISTOW — Police are warning people about a particular deadly batch of heroin, where first responders are calling it 100 times more powerful than fentanyl as it's finding its way through New England communities.

READ: NH police warning of potentially lethal batches of heroin featuring new drug, W-18

"Yes there is that new batch out there and potentially more potent and we can’t say definitely if we’ve seen it here," Plaistow Fire Chief John McArdle said.

While there are no confirmed cases in the Granite State, the entire region is on edge. In Fitchburg, Mass., there were eight overdoses last week, two of which were deadly. Officials are working to confirm whether a research drug known as W-18 was involved.

"I’m on the front lines, I’m out there on the streets," Plaistow Operations Lieutenant William Baldwin said. "I’m going to the calls where there are overdoses left and right."

New Hampshire has yet to confirm if the new lethal combination has been the cause of any overdoses in recent weeks. But with a track record of being 10,000 times more powerful than morphine, and often used on large animals like elephants and bears, you can bet first responders are preparing.

In Sanford and Wells, Maine, police are using Facebook to warn the public of W-18 saying education is their strongest approach.

"Well what you’re going to see is the price of narcan go up because they are probably going to have to put more shots into an individual," Baldwin said. "The 1 or 2 or 3 right now you’ll probably have to do 5 or 6 or 7."

Plaistow crews responded to two overdoses over the weekend and at this time they are uncertain if W-18 was involved in either.


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