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Penticton sees 3 fatal overdoses in 2 months

Information from the BC Coroners Service paints a grim picture in Penticton
People hold banners during a march to remember those who died during the overdose crisis and to call for a safe supply of illicit drugs on International Overdose Awareness Day, in Vancouver, on Tuesday, August 31, 2021. According to the latest information from the BC Coroners Service there have been no deaths reported at supervised consumption or drug overdose prevention sites. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck)

Penticton had three fatal overdoses over two months in the area’s second worst year so far, based on the latest data from the BC Coroners Service.

As of August, there have been 18 people who have died due to an overdose in the community.

Between January and June, there were 15 fatal overdoses in the area, according to data provided by the Coroners Service.

Five of those deaths occurred between May and June.

READ MORE: 5 fatal overdoses in 2 months brings total to 15 deaths in Penticton this year

That has already made 2021 the second worst year for overdoses, surpassing the 17 recorded for the entirety of 2020, or the 16 recorded both in 2018 and 2017.

So far, Penticton has not surpassed 2019’s record of 22 fatal overdoses, however four months of data remain before it will be clear just how bad 2021 has been.

Penticton currently has a higher fatal overdose rate per 100,000 people than Vernon, which has 44.8 per 100,000 and 22 fatal overdoses in 2021, or the Central Okanagan at 34.7 per 100,000 with 52 fatal overdoses this year.

READ MORE: Contaminated drug alert issued for Penticton

According to the Coroners Service, the majority of those who have died to an overdose were found to have fentanyl in their systems.

Interior Health recently issued a contaminated drug alert for meth contaminated with fentanyl in the Penticton area.

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Brennan Phillips

About the Author: Brennan Phillips

Brennan was raised in the Okanagan and is thankful every day that he gets to live and work in one of the most beautiful places in Canada.
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