Canada’s national police force is rolling out naloxone kits for officers across the country — and a Kamloops-based constable is part of a video to help educate Mounties about the potential dangers of fentanyl.
Naloxone is a medication used to block the effects of opioids and reverse overdoses.
In an RCMP video posted to YouTube last week (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w48y6tzkpkg), Const. Rob Dupuis describes an encounter he had with the deadly opioid during a traffic stop in the Tournament Capital.
Dupuis said he found a man slumped over the steering wheel of a vehicle.
The man was arrested and Dupuis began to search the car.
He said he smelled chemicals and began to feel light-headed and dizzy, so he radioed for backup and was taken to hospital. There, tests revealed he had trace amounts of opiates in his system.
“The traffic stop is one of the most dangerous things we will do in our career because of the unknown,” Dupuis says in the video.
“And now, adding fentanyl to the mixture, you are stopping a vehicle and you think it’s drugs and you’re looking at it and you think it’s cocaine or heroin — you just don’t know anymore.”
B.C. provincial health officer Dr. Perry Kendall has praised the RCMP’s decision to provide officers with naloxone kits.
“Adding naloxone to the list of tools at their disposal means they are able to keep themselves and those they serve and protect safe,” he said in a statement.
“At the end of the day, that is what it is all about — keeping British Columbians safe. The RCMP police the vast majority of British Columbia and this positive step will impact many communities in the province.
“RCMP encountering a member of the public who has been contaminated either accidentally or in the course of using a drug contaminated with fentanyl will administer naloxone with the goal of saving a life.”