Toll reaches almost four a day in B.C.’s overdose crisis: coroner

120 died in B.C. last month of illicit overdoses

VICTORIA — Nearly four people died every day last month from an illicit drug overdose in British Columbia.

Data from the BC Coroners Service says 120 people died in March, the third-highest death toll for a single month on record in the province.

Almost 83 per cent of the victims in the first three months of this year were men, and those between the ages of 30 and 49 accounted for the highest number of dead.

Chief coroner Lisa Lapointe says the powerful opioid fentanyl appears to account for the large increase in overdose deaths since 2012, because overdoses where fentanyl isn’t detected have remained relatively stable.

Lapointe says while harm reduction measures are reversing thousands of overdoses, long-term measures to stem the tide must include education at an early age and evidence-based treatment.

The coroner is part of the B.C. government’s joint task force on overdose response along with other health, community and law enforcement agencies formed after the declaration of a health emergency last year.

 

The Canadian Press

Just Posted

Happy ending to Tom Sawyer’s story

Happy ending to story of a cat left on the side of the road to die

Many Hats newest performer right on (comedic) time

Many Hats newest production in Penticton is the comedy, Buying the Moose

Art gallery heating things up with chilli cook-off

Penticton art gallery pits local chefs against one another for a fundraiser

Veteran reporter to stay at Global Okanagan

Blaine Gaffney was given a layoff notice after a miscommunication

Column: Disappointed by comments about local rally

Dustin Godfrey is a reporter for the Penticton Western News

What’s happening

Check out what is happening this weekend in the Okanagan-Shuswap.

How to keep local news visible in your Facebook feed

Facebook has changed the news feed to emphasize personal connections. You might see less news.

Olympic dreams come true for South Okanagan coach

Penticton coach watches as his skier brings home the gold

Vancouver artist’s cartoon of Florida school shooting resonates

Cartoon shows football coach, one of the victims, meeting others killed in school shootings

Trudeau family arrives in India for state visit

Seven-day visit includes meeting with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi

Military seeks DNA experts to help ID missing war dead

Federal program recovers, identifies and arranges burials for Canada’s nearly 28,000 missing war dead

Ski Patrol and SAR search for missing skier

Man’s truck found in Revelstoke Mountain Resort’s parking lot covered in ‘several days’ snow’

B.C. man brings dog to court as ‘best witness’

Man is defending himself on charges of uttering threats, possessing weapon for dangerous purposes

Most Read