PITTSFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – The Berkshire District Attorney’s Office advises residents to be cautious about cocaine and other drugs laced with Fentanyl.

In a news release sent to 22News on Thursday, the Berkshire County Law Enforcement Task Force and the Berkshire State Police Detective Unit report that an increased amount of Fentanyl is being discovered in various drugs that recreational users may not be expecting. 

Law Enforcement responding to recent overdoses, both fatal and non-fatal, are finding through toxicology and drug testing that Fentanyl is present more frequently in cocaine products and drugs purported to be prescription but are not.

The recent findings in Berkshire County are consistent with statewide trends. The Department of Public Health recently released 2021 data, which showed an 8.8% increase in fatal overdoses statewide. The report indicates that Fentanyl and cocaine are the most commonly present substances in fatal overdoses.

The Berkshire District Attorney’s Office reminds people using drugs to be careful with intake, use Fentanyl test strips, and never use alone. The office encourages all residents to learn the signs of overdose and act immediately. Call 911, administer naloxone, perform rescue breathing, and stay with the person until help arrives.

The Good Samaritan Law protects those who report overdoses from arrest and prosecution for drug possession.

On its website, the Berkshire Overdose Addiction Prevention Collaborative provides contact information for several local resources providing harm reduction, recovery support, Narcan training and distribution, case management, and youth programming.