Meth overdose deaths increasing

BOWLING GREEN Ky.- In Kentucky, the number of drug overdose deaths from methamphetamine is climbing because the purity level of the drug is increasing.

Last year three people died from meth overdoses in Warren County. Five years ago, that was unheard of, said Bowling Green-Warren County Drug Task Force director Thomas Loving.

About five years ago when most meth users were buying locally produced meth, or meth they cooked themselves, the drug was 30 percent pure.

Now that cartel-produced meth has flooded the south-central Kentucky illicit drug market, the drug is cheap, plentiful and deadly.

“Crystal meth or Mexican meth that we’re seeing flood the area by the pounds is 90 to 100 percent pure. It’s resulting in overdose deaths,” Loving said.

In the last five years, the number of methamphetamine submissions to the state crime lab has increased 402 percent from 2,736 in 2013, to 13,743 last year.

In 2017, more than 200 people died statewide from meth overdose deaths.

Final numbers for 2018 are expected to show more than 300 meth overdose deaths in Kentucky.