The Bay Roberts RCMP released a statement on their Facebook page this afternoon stating that they have found traces of fentanyl in piece of bubblegum located near a drug overdose victim.

Investigating an overdose call in the community, the responding officer, upon seeing the person who overdosed, applied Naloxone (Narcan) nasal spray to the victim which ended up being “instrumental in reversing the effects of the overdose.”

Among the “numerous items” found near the victim, the RCMP said that a package, similar to Hubba Bubba bubble gum container, was also found. Preliminary testing found that this gum showed signs of being contaminated with narcotics, in particular, fentanyl.

Replica image of the bubblegum container containing the fentanyl released by the RCMP.

Fentanyl is an extremely potent drug that can result in death even if only a small amount is consumed. Currently, fentanyl is one of the big drivers of Canada’s opioid crisis, causing 72% of the 9000 deaths from January 2016 to June 2018.

The RCMP confirmed that the victim is an adult who is alive and in hospital.

The source of the bubblegum is unknown at this point, however, the RCMP believe it came from outside the province. The RCMP suspect the gum was laced with narcotics following its purchase and then sent through the mail to its recipient. They do not believe that any gum currently being sold in the area is at risk.

The RCMP are asking local residents to be “vigilant and mindful in the event other such substances are in our community.”