Ambulance crews responding to large number of overdoses across Fayette, Westmoreland counties

Ambulance crews responding to large number of overdoses across Fayette, Westmoreland counties

GREENSBURG, Pa. — Ambulance crews have been responding to a substantial amount of overdose calls in Fayette County and across parts of Westmoreland County. Officials believe there could be a “bad batch” of drugs behind the problem.

“When a batch of bad substance comes into your area, normally it is in bulk so we don’t see one overdose here, one here, isolated. We start to see multiple calls in the same area,” said John Duke with Brownsville Ambulance Service.

In the last 24 hours, medics responded to over a dozen calls related to suspected drug overdoses and people under the influence. From the Connellsville area to Fayette City and Saltlick Township, at least three of the overdoses were deadly. Duke said the behavior of the people under the influence has been concerning.

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“Combativeness. Walking around town with no shirt or pants on. Just stuff that’s totally off the wall and out there,” he said.

Officials said while it’s dangerous to the people taking the substances, it’s also taxing on the crews who respond.

“We all staff based on our call volume and what we can substantiate financially and when this additional call volume comes on, none of us are prepared for it,” Duke said.

He’s putting out a warning about the drugs, especially after three people died.

“Time still matters. If you have signs or symptoms of anything, call us. Let us get you the treatment you need,” Duke said.

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