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Drug alert and Overdose Alert - The Pas
June 10, 2024

Street drugs found in purple powder tested for medetomidine, fentanyl and xylazine, The Pas, Manitoba

A sample of a street drug that appeared as purple powder was seized in The Pas, Manitoba and received by Health Canada - Drug Analysis Service on May 9, 2024. The sample tested for Medetomidine, Fentanyl, and Xylazine.

Medetomidine is a veterinary tranquilizer approved only for use on animals. This drug is considered to be more potent than xylazine (longer acting and produce greater sedation). This is the first time this substance has been detected in Manitoba. Because it is not an opioid, naloxone does not work on it.

Xylazine is a veterinary tranquilizer that can cause drowsiness and sedation, slow breathing, heart rate, and blood pressure to dangerously low level, and may cause the person to lose consciousness. Because it is not an opioid, naloxone does not work on it.

Fentanyl is a very toxic opioid drug that can result in overdose causing respiratory depression, unconsciousness and death.

Health Canada's Drug Analysis Service (DAS) test illegal drugs seized by Canadian law enforcement agencies. For more information on drugs analyzed by DAS, see Analyzed Drug Report - Drug Analysis Service | Public Health Infobase - Public Health Agency of Canada

April 15, 2024

Street drugs found in an unusual form (tablet) tested for para-Fluorofentanyl and Fentanyl, Winnipeg, Manitoba

A sample of a street drug that appeared as a tablet (counterfeit Hydromorphone Tablet) was seized in Winnipeg, Manitoba and received by Health Canada - Drug Analysis Service in March 22, 2024. The sample tested for para-Fluorofentanyl, Fentanyl, and caffeine.

Para-Flourofentanyl is a synthetic opioid related to fentanyl. This substance has been associated with increased opioid toxicity in North America. Clinical research evidence indicates that pFF is more potent than Fentanyl.

Fentanyl is a very toxic opioid drug that can result in overdose causing respiratory depression, unconsciousness and death.

Opioids like para-fluorofentanyl and fentanyl may respond to naloxone.

Health Canada's Drug Analysis Service (DAS) test illegal drugs seized by Canadian law enforcement agencies. For more information on drugs analyzed by DAS, see Analyzed Drug Report - Drug Analysis Service | Public Health Infobase - Public Health Agency of Canada

February 5, 2024

Street drugs found in an unusual form (tablet) tested for Fentanyl, Falcon Beach, Manitoba

A sample of a street drug that appeared as a tablet (counterfeit Hydromorphone Tablet) in Falcon Beach, Manitoba and tested by Health Canada - Drug Analysis Service on January 2, 2024. The sample tested from Fentanyl.

Health Canada's Drug Analysis Service (DAS) tests illegal drugs seized by Canadian law enforcement agencies. For more information on drugs analyzed by DAS, see Analyzed Drug Report - Drug Analysis Service | Public Health Infobase - Public Health Agency of Canada

Fentanyl is a very toxic opioid drug that can result in overdose causing respiratory depression, unconsciousness and death.

June 28, 2023

Street drugs tested for bromazolam, fentanyl and xylazine in Winnipeg

A sample of a street drug that appeared as a tablet (counterfeit Xanax tablet) was confiscated in Winnipeg, Manitoba and tested by Health Canada - Drug Analysis Service in May 2023. The sample tested for Bromazolam (benzo), Fentanyl, and Xylazine.

Health Canada's Drug Analysis Service (DAS) test illegal drugs seized by Canadian law enforcement agencies. For more information on drugs analyzed by DAS, see Ana­lyzed Drug Report — Drug Analy­sis Ser­vice | Pub­lic Health Infobase — Pub­lic Health Agency of Canada

Bro­ma­zo­lam is a high­ly potent, short-act­ing ben­zo­di­azepine-relat­ed drug. It has effects that depress the cen­tral ner­vous sys­tem, these include seda­tion and skele­tal mus­cu­lar relaxation.

Ben­zos caus­es res­pi­ra­to­ry depres­sion and seda­tion and may cause a per­son to lose con­scious­ness. Because it is not an opi­oid, nalox­one does not work on it.

Ben­zo­di­azepines (espe­cial­ly in large amounts) mixed with fen­tanyl can cause a com­plex over­dose. If pos­si­ble, con­sid­er start­ing with a small tester dose, not using alone and car­ry­ing naloxone.

Fen­tanyl is a very tox­ic opi­oid drug that can result in over­dose caus­ing res­pi­ra­to­ry depres­sion, uncon­scious­ness and death.

The com­bi­na­tion of these two sub­stances can increase harms.

April 28, 2023

Street drugs test­ed for fen­tanyl and ben­zo­di­azepines in Winnipeg

A sam­ple of a sub­stance sold as ​“unknown” that looked like blue gran­ules in Win­nipeg was test­ed by Get Your Drugs Test­ed ser­vices. This sam­ple was dat­ed on April 25, 2023. It was test­ed by FTIR spec­trom­e­ter tech­nol­o­gy, which found to have a com­bi­na­tion of fentanyl 10-15%, bro­ma­zo­lam 5 – 10% and dimethyl sulfone, caf­feine and ery­thri­tol. It was pos­i­tive for fen­tanyl and/​or fen­tanyl ana­logues on the fen­tanyl test strip. It was pos­i­tive for ben­zo­di­azepines on the ben­zo test strip.

Fen­tanyl is a very tox­ic opi­oid drug that can result in over­dose caus­ing res­pi­ra­to­ry depres­sion, uncon­scious­ness and death.

Bro­ma­zo­lam is a high­ly potent, short-act­ing ben­zo­di­azepine-relat­ed drug. It has effects that depress the cen­tral ner­vous sys­tem, these include seda­tion and skele­tal mus­cu­lar relaxation.

Ben­zos caus­es res­pi­ra­to­ry depres­sion and seda­tion and may cause a per­son to lose con­scious­ness. Because it is not an opi­oid, nalox­one does not work on it.

Ben­zo­di­azepines (espe­cial­ly in large amounts) mixed with fen­tanyl can cause a com­plex over­dose. If pos­si­ble, con­sid­er start­ing with a small tester dose, not using alone and car­ry­ing naloxone.

The com­bi­na­tion of these two sub­stances can increase harms.


March 31, 2023

Street drugs tested for fentanyl and benzodiazepines in Winnipeg

A sample of a substance sold as “down” that looked like blue granules in Winnipeg was tested by Get Your Drugs Tested services. This sample was dated on March 29, 2023. It was tested by FTIR spectrometer technology, which found to have a combination of bromazolam 15-20%, fentanyl 15-20%, and caffeine and erythritol. It was positive for fentanyl and/or fentanyl analogues on the fentanyl test strip. It was positive for benzodiazepines on the benzo test strip.

This sample contained a larger amount of benzodiazepines than typically tested by this service in Vancouver.

Fentanyl is a very tox­ic opi­oid drug that can result in over­dose caus­ing res­pi­ra­to­ry depres­sion, uncon­scious­ness and death.

Bromazolam is a highly potent, short-acting benzodiazepine-related drug. It has effects that depress the central nervous system, these include sedation and skeletal muscular relaxation.

Ben­zos caus­es res­pi­ra­to­ry depres­sion and seda­tion and may cause a per­son to lose con­scious­ness. Because it is not an opi­oid, nalox­one does not work on it.

Benzodiazepines (especially in large amounts) mixed with fentanyl can cause a complex overdose. If possible, consider starting with a small tester dose, not using alone and carrying naloxone.

The com­bi­na­tion of these two sub­stances can increase harms.

February 21, 2023

Street drugs in Manitoba of con­cern and nov­el sub­stances: Deschloroetizolam and Fentanyl.

An orange powder/​grainy substance seized in Winkler, Manitoba in January 2023 was tested. Health Cana­da Drug Analy­sis Ser­vices con­firmed the prod­uct to con­tain Deschloroetizolam, a benzodiazepine, and Fen­tanyl.

Deschloroetizolam is a benzodiazepine-related drug, structurally similar to etizolam, although half as potent and lasting twice as long.

Fen­tanyl is a very tox­ic opi­oid drug (approx­i­mate­ly 50 – 100 times more tox­ic than mor­phine) that can result in over­dose caus­ing res­pi­ra­to­ry depres­sion, uncon­scious­ness and death.

Ben­zo­di­azepine (ben­zos) caus­es res­pi­ra­to­ry depres­sion and seda­tion and may cause a per­son to lose con­scious­ness. Because it is not an opi­oid, nalox­one does not work on it. Ben­zo­di­azepines can be more dan­ger­ous when com­bined with opioids.

Health Canada’s Drug Analy­sis Ser­vice (DAS) test ille­gal drugs seized by Cana­di­an law enforce­ment agen­cies. For more infor­ma­tion on drugs ana­lyzed by DAS, see Ana­lyzed Drug Report — Drug Analy­sis Ser­vice | Pub­lic Health Infobase — Pub­lic Health Agency of Canada

Xylazine is a tranquilizer that can cause drowsiness and sedation, slow breathing, heart rate, and blood pressure to dangerously low level, and may cause the person to lose consciousness. Because it is not an opi­oid, nalox­one does not work on it.

The combination of these three substances can compound harms.

January 20, 2023

Cases of severe overdose presenting to hospital (HSC) reporting using meth - week of Jan.16, 2023

Reports indicate the substance was sold as “meth” and brought about sudden loss of consciousness and quick, severe problems breathing. No information is currently available confirming the components of the substances involved. People were responsive to naloxone.

December 19, 2022

Street drugs tested for fentanyl and benzodiazepines in Winnipeg

A sample of a substance sold as “unknown” that looked like a small orange pebble in Winnipeg was tested by Get Your Drugs Tested services. This sample was dated on December 7, 2022. It was tested by FTIR spectrometer technology, which found to have a combination of erythritol 65-70%, and fentanyl 30-35%. It was positive for fentanyl and/or fentanyl analogues on the fentanyl test strip. It was negative for benzodiazepines on the benzo test strip. However, it is suspected that this sample contains etizolam, a benzo drug class that does not trigger the benzo test strips.

Fentanyl is a very tox­ic opi­oid drug that can result in over­dose caus­ing res­pi­ra­to­ry depres­sion, uncon­scious­ness and death.

Etizolam is a thienodiazepine which is similar to the benzodiazepine drug class. It has effects that depress the central nervous system, these include sedation and skeletal muscular relaxation. Etizolam is strong at low doses.

Ben­zos caus­es res­pi­ra­to­ry depres­sion and seda­tion and may cause a per­son to lose con­scious­ness. Because it is not an opi­oid, nalox­one does not work on it.

This sample contains more than the average amount of fentanyl tested by this service in Vancouver and in combination with possible etizolam, there is a higher risk for a complex overdose. If possible, consider starting with a small tester dose, not using alone and carrying naloxone.

The com­bi­na­tion of these two sub­stances can increase harms.

October 25, 2022

Community agencies in central Winnipeg report occurrence of fatal drug toxicity events Oct 21/22, 2022 and a spike in harms related to drug toxicity over the same time frame.

Reports indicate the substance was sold as “meth” and brought about unexpected loss of consciousness and quick, severe impairment of respiratory function. No information is currently available confirming the components of the substances involved.


October 12, 2022

Street drugs in Winnipeg of concern and novel substances: Para-Fluorofentanyl and Isotonitazine.

A brown powder/grainy substance seized in Winnipeg in September 2022. Health Canada Drug Analysis Services has confirmed the product to contain Para-Fluorofentanyl, Fentanyl, a benzodiazepine named etizolam, caffeine, and diphenhydramine

Counterfeit Oxycodone tablets: blue, round, "PERCOCET 5" on one side, scored on reverse were seized in Winnipeg in August 2022. Health Canada Drug Analysis Services has confirmed the product to contain a benzimidazole opioid, namely Isotonitazene.

Isotonitazene is a synthetic opioid drug, considered to be approximately 500 times more toxic than morphine.

Fentanyl is a very toxic opioid drug (approximately 50-100 times more toxic than morphine) that can result in overdose causing respiratory depression, unconsciousness and death.

Para-fluorofentanyl is a synthetic opioid related to fentanyl. There is little information available on the strength of this drug related to fentanyl, but it has been associated with increased opioid toxicity in North America.

Benzodiazepine (benzos) causes respiratory depression and sedation and may cause a person to lose consciousness. Because it is not an opioid, naloxone does not work on it. Benzodiazepines can be more dangerous when combined with opioids.

Health Canada's Drug Analysis Service (DAS) test illegal drugs seized by Canadian law enforcement agencies. For more information on drugs analyzed by DAS, see Analyzed Drug Report - Drug Analysis Service | Public Health Infobase - Public Health Agency of Canada

October 6, 2021

Street drugs tested for fentanyl and benzodiazepines in Winnipeg

A sample of a substances sold as “unknown” that looked like green granules in Winnipeg was tested by Get Your Drug Tested services. This sample, tested by FTIR spectrometer technology, was found to have a combination of Dimethyl Sulfone 60-65% (a filler), uncertain oil 20-25%, Fentanyl 15-20%, an uncertain match likely to be a fentanyl analogue 5-10%. This sample also tested positive for Benzodiazepines by test strip.

Fentanyl is a very toxic opioid drug that can result in overdose causing respiratory depression, unconsciousness and death.

Benzodiazepine (benzos) causes respiratory depression and sedation and may cause a person to lose consciousness. Because it is not an opioid, naloxone does not work on it.

The combination of these two substances can increase harms.

October 6, 2021

Street drugs tested for fentanyl and benzodiazepines in Winnipeg

A sample of a substances sold as “unknown” that looked like a orange chunk in Winnipeg was tested by Get Your Drug Tested services. This sample, tested by FTIR spectrometer technology, was found to have a combination of Erythritol 75-80% (a sugar-based filler), Caffeine 15-20%, Fentanyl 5-10% This sample also tested positive for Benzodiazepines by test strip.

Fentanyl is a very toxic opioid drug that can result in overdose causing respiratory depression, unconsciousness and death.

Benzodiazepine (benzos) causes respiratory depression and sedation and may cause a person to lose consciousness. Because it is not an opioid, naloxone does not work on it.

The combination of these two substances can increase harms.

If you use drugs:

Call 911 (or your local emer­gency response num­ber) if you wit­ness or expe­ri­ence an over­dose. The Good Samar­i­tan Over­dose Pro­tec­tion Act will pro­tect those involved from drug pos­ses­sion charges or breach of pro­ba­tion/pre-tri­al release charges.

  • Get nalox­one and over­dose train­ing before using – bring a friend
  • Be aware that ben­zo­di­azepines don’t respond to naloxone.
  • Do not use drugs alone or behind a locked door. Have a des­ig­nat­ed respon­der: Stag­ger use with friends so some­one can respond/​call 911 if needed. 
  • If you are using alone con­sid­er call­ing the Nation­al Over­dose Pre­ven­tion Hot­line at 18886886677, where you will be con­nect­ed to a safe con­sump­tion vol­un­teer who stays on the line for 15 – 30 min­utes while you use the substance.
  • Use a less direct route when you take drugs. Inject­ing a drug is the most direct and dan­ger­ous route. 
  • If you mix drugs, reduce the amount of each drug you take and use opi­oids before ben­zos or alco­hol. Use the most unpre­dictable drug first.
  • Use one drug at a time, test your drugs every time by doing a small­er than usu­al test amount first.
  • Wait before tak­ing anoth­er dose – some drugs take longer to take effect
  • The amount of nalox­one in a take-home kit may not be enough to reverse very pow­er­ful over­dos­es, such as those caused by fen­tanyl-like drugs.
  • If you inject do not share any injec­tion equip­ment (nee­dles, cook­ers, fil­ters, rinse). Ster­ile drug use sup­plies are avail­able from many places.