Officials are now warning about a new type of colorful fentanyl that is circulating in the Pacific Northwest, and it could pose an additional risk to children.
Drug Enforcement Agency director for Oregon-Idaho High-Intensity Drug Trafficking Area, Chris Gibson, told Fox News on Thursday about the risk of the highly potent, chalky drug.
“Our biggest fear is, is that it will get in the hands of children who don’t understand what it is that they have and thinking that it’s sidewalk chalk or a piece of candy ingesting it and eventually or potentially overdosing on what is a very, very potent drug that is killing hundreds of thousands of people a year in this country,” Gibson said on “Fox and Friends.”
The substance is nicknamed “rainbow fentanyl” as it can be dyed in a variety of colors. The warning comes as Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office recently seized 800 fentanyl pills and four grams of the colored substance.
“We are partnering with Multnomah County health departments to sound the alarm,” SIU Sergeant Matt Ferguson said in a press release.
“The public needs to be aware of the rising use of powdered fentanyl. We believe this is going to be the new trend seen on the streets of Portland.”
As for Gibson, he attributes the rise in fentanyl trafficking directly to the crisis at the southern border.
“This is definitely produced south of our border in Mexico and being transported across the border and then distributed to communities by drug trafficking organizations that exist within this country,” he told Fox News.
Fentanyl overdose is the leading cause of death for Americans 18 to 45.