1 dead, 12 hospitalized in mass fentanyl overdose in California

1 dead, 4 in critical condition at mass overdose in California house

Both officers were treated and released.

Police say a mass overdose at a house in Chico that killed one man and left four people in critical condition appears to have been largely caused by the unsafe opiate fentanyl, the Enterprise Record reports.

"We were waiting and have been waiting, unfortunately, for this to happen in the sense that we knew fentanyl had been moving west and in other parts of the country they're really seeing the greatest impact of this drug", O'Brien said.

Two officers who responded to the scene also went to a hospital after they said they felt the effects of a drug similar to fentanyl, KHSL-TV reported.

The victims - aged 19 to 30 - all became ill yesterday after taking the powerful drug fentanyl.

Chico Police Chief Michael O'Brien got a 911 call from inside the home in the 1100 block of Santana Court, pictured above.

According to O'Brien, eight people were admitted, four of whom are listed as being in critical condition. Authorities suspect the overdoses were caused by ingestion of the unsafe drug and a separate substance that is yet to be determined. O'Brien said it's believed to have been a form of fentanyl that was mixed with another unknown substance.

The home is now being treated as a "hazmat site", but O'Brien said it is "not a danger to the public".

"We do respond to many, many overdoses", O'Brien said.

"'That is changing unfortunately, and now we've had this mass casualty incident... likely to have been cause by fentanyl".

The Drug Enforcement Administration depicts the flow of illicit opioids from China into the United States in a recent report.

"That should concern us all", he said. A report issued by the Centers for Disease Control in December showed fentanyl was the leading cause of overdose deaths in the US for 2016, the most recent year numbers have been released.

Fentanyl, a synthetic opioid pain reliever, is 50 to 100 times more potent than morphine.

The majority-or least 68 percent-of those deaths could be attributed to opioids such as fentanyl.

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