Suspected Fentanyl Overdoses Leave 1 Dead, 12 Hospitalized

1 dead, 4 in critical condition at mass overdose in California house

1 dead, 4 in critical condition at mass overdose in California house

Police say a mass overdose at a house in Chico that killed one man and left four people in critical condition appears to have been largely caused by the risky opiate fentanyl, the Enterprise Record reports. When they arrived they found one man dead and had to transport 12 people to the hospital.

The Chico Enterprise-Record reports that all of the people hospitalized were over the age of 18, and most appeared to be in their 20s.

O'Brien says, "It's not a danger to the public at this time, but i do want to emphasize that but certainly in the processing of that scene we need to do that very carefully, because it definitely is a hazmat site at this point".

As of about 10 pm last night, nine people were still in the hospital, four in critical condition, two in serious condition, and three in fair condition.

Four of the victims were in critical condition, said Mike O'Brien, a police captain in Chico, California.

He said the cause of death for the male victim is likely a drug overdose, but he added that it is too early in the investigation. "Officers began to both administer CPR and also naloxone to those individuals", he said.

The two police officers were treated and released, officials say they are in good health.

A mass casualty incident was declared to prepare Enloe Hospital for a large number of patients and every Butte County ambulance responded to the house, according to Chico Fire Chief Steve Standridge.

Chico Police Chief Michael O'Brien said at a press conference that police received a 911 call from someone inside the residence of a home in the 1100 block of Santana Court about 9 a.m.

Police are not clear about how or why the victims might have consumed the substance.

Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid that is 80-to-100 times stronger than morphine, according to the US
Drug Enforcement Administration.

The home is now being treated as a "hazmat site", but O'Brien said it is "not a danger to the public". A report issued by the Centers for Disease Control in December showed fentanyl was the leading cause of overdose deaths in the US for 2016, the most recent year numbers have been released.

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