Children home during White Rock overdose death

Two weekend fatalities in White Rock, as police link fentanyl to heroin, cocaine use

Two overdose deaths occurred in White Rock in less than 24 hours over the weekend, and police say one has been confirmed connected to the deadly narcotic fentanyl.

Both victims were men. One died in a home where two children were present, and the Ministry of Children and Family Development is involved, Staff Sgt. Daryl Creighton told Peace Arch News Tuesday morning.

According to Creighton, the first death occurred shortly before 11 a.m. Saturday, at a home in the 15900-block of North Bluff Road. A witness told police that the 34-year-old victim believed he was taking was a combination of heroin and cocaine.

“A blood test conducted at the hospital indicated fentanyl in the system and no other opioids, however, that has not been confirmed through the coroners’ service at this time,” Creighton said.

The second man – a 54-year-old described as a suspected heroin user – died around 12:30 a.m. Sunday at a friend’s home in the 15200-block of Marine Drive, and fentanyl is suspected, Creighton said.

The deaths were the city’s first this year that have been linked to fentanyl, Creighton said, noting White Rock recorded just one such overdose fatality in all of 2015.

“It appears at least one of (the two men) was unaware (that he was taking fentanyl), and the other one likely thought they were doing heroin,” Creighton said.

“Police are actively investigating to determine the source of the fentanyl.”

BC Coroners Service spokesperson Barb McLintock said by email at noon Monday that testing has not yet confirmed fentanyl.

“We don’t have any toxicology reports back yet and are unwilling to confirm anything until we do as preliminary information is too often wrong,” McLintock said.

Creighton said the deaths also prompted a conversation with City of White Rock officials as to whether steps should be taken to better-inform citizens of the risk.

“I’m aware other communities in the Lower Mainland have provided public forums to inform people of the dangers of fentanyl use.

“(We’re) working in conjunction with the city to determine if something like that is necessary at this time.”

According to recent coroners-service statistics, there were 622 illicit-drug overdose deaths in B.C. between January and the end of October. More than half have been linked to fentanyl – a synthetic opioid described at a recent community forum in Delta as 100 times more powerful than morphine.

A multi-prong response strategy has been underway since the province declared a public health emergency in April and created a dedicated task force in July.

Efforts include making naloxone much more widely available to reverse overdoses in progress. It was used to save 10 people in Whalley over the weekend.

Just Posted

Surrey-based business donates $1M to hospital’s children centre improvements

Surrey Hospital Foundation kicks off campaign for ‘transformation’ of children’s centre

OUR VIEW: Surrey’s unsung heroes inspire

The Now-Leader was proud to celebrate some deserving unsung heroes in this city on Wednesday night

Metro Vancouver mayors cancel Surrey LRT in favour of SkyTrain

Doug McCallum claims he can build the line for the $1.65 billion already committed to light rail

North Delta family raising money for brain cancer treatment

23-year-old Tashina Janus and her family are raising funds to get her immunotherapy in the U.S.

Surrey opera singer brings Mozart’s ‘Così fan tutte’ to Vancouver stage

Nancy Hasiuk-Lay has been hailed for her ‘sparkling and crystalline vocal tone’

Surrey Community Leader Award winners revealed

The 16th CLA awards, presented by the Now-Leader, recognized Surrey’s un-sung heroes

B.C. Realtor suspended after helping intern forge note about sick grandma

Vancouver real estate agent Jaideep Singh Puri has to pay fine, take ethics course

Offensive Facebook post by Okanagan Conservative riding sparks outrage

Post taken down after Conservative MP in neighbouring riding condemns it and demands removal

Judge rules against ALC on rural B.C. subdivision

The ALC can’t change the definition of an acre, the judge ruled.

Friends describe murder victim as ‘most caring guy we knew’

Jagvir Malhi of Abbotsford was not involved in gangs or criminal activity, they say

John Horgan shrugs off low turnout, change to referendum option

‘No’ proportional representation group says voting should be extended

Two more government pot shops to open in Kamloops

Two private applications are also in the queue to come before city council by the end of the year

2 B.C. men charged after allegedly stealing $1,400 worth of butter

The two men, ages 23 and 25, are facing charges of theft under $5,000, Coquitlam police said

Invasive fire ants join the tourist swarms at Hawaii Volcano National Park

Invasive species found at popular tourist destination

Most Read