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State Police seeing more drug overdoses at the NYS Fair this year


State Police are seeing the number of drug overdoses at the State Fair on the rise this year. Even before opening day, State Police spokesman Jack Keller said troopers were responding to overdoses on the fairgrounds.

"We had about four or five on the grounds, even before the fair started. So there were a number of workers who overdosed,” said Keller. “Narcan was used and luckily they were brought back and fully recovered."

Keller said State Police continue to see an increased number of overdoses on the fairgrounds this year, and he blames it on the issue communities everywhere are facing.

“Most of it has to do with some kind of fentanyl overdose,” he said. “Whether it’s with marijuana, heroin, but we’re definitely seeing an increase, and it’s not slowing down.”

Keller says one good thing at the fair, anyone overdosing can get help from the emergency medical team on the grounds.

"They are on bicycles, they are on four-wheelers, and they are all equipped with Narcan,” Keller said. “And they have a different version of Narcan than we do. We use a nasal spray and they have a needle version."

Keller said the injectable version of the overdose-halting drug works more quickly than the nasal version. Keller adds State Police investigators continue to search for drug dealers on the fairgrounds. The State Police Violent Gang and Narcotics Team arrested a California man last week for allegedly selling illegal drugs at the fair.

Ellen produces news reports and features related to events that occur in the greater Syracuse area and throughout Onondaga County. Her reports are heard regularly in regional updates in Morning Edition and All Things Considered.