East Liverpool police officer Chris Green was involved in a drug bust Friday and followed protocol throughout the arrest. However, some fentanyl powder had spilled on his shirt, which caused him to overdose as he brushed it off. Paramedics saved the officer’s life by treating him with Narcan, the opioid blocker, otherwise reportedly he would have died.

Ohio police investigate a drug deal

Police were investigating a possible recent drug deal at the time and searched a vehicle on Lisbon Street, suspected to have been involved in the deal. During the search and the arrest, Green had worn regulation gloves and a mask while searching the suspects’ vehicle, which was reportedly covered in white powder.

Police believe that the driver of the vehicle, 25-year-old Justin Buckel, and his passenger, 24-year-old Cortez Collins, had broken open the bags of fentanyl in an attempt to hide the substance in the floor of the car.

Green said when he arrived at the scene, Buckel was covered in the white powder. He said he patted Buckel down, but that was the only time during the drug bust that he wasn’t wearing gloves. The rest of the time Green said he followed protocol. However, fentanyl powder is so incredibly potent that it can be lethal if it touches the skin.

Second contact with fentanyl for the Ohio cop

What made things worse for Ohio cop is that he made contact with the drug for a second time when back at the police station. Green said he had been back at the station for around an hour when one of his colleagues noted he had white powder on his shirt. Without thinking anything of it, he brushed the fentanyl powder off with his hand.

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Within an hour the police officer was overdosing. Green said he began feeling very strange, he said he was talking “weird” and could feel his body shutting down. He said he could hear everyone else around him talking, but couldn’t respond to them. Totally in shock, Green then realized that he was overdosing.

As noted by the IB Times, luckily for Green, paramedics were already on their way to the station as Buckel had also said he was feeling unwell.

Both the police officer and the suspect were then saved by the administration of Narcan.

As noted by Sky News, fentanyl can easily be absorbed through the skin. Reportedly just a few specks of the drug can kill an adult. The synthetic opiate is 100 times more powerful than heroin and is causing devastation among drug users throughout the country. Green said that drugs are not just killing those willing to put it into their own veins, they are now killing other people like himself and his family.

According to East Liverpool Police Chief John Lane, if Green had been alone after the arrest, he would almost certainly have died, adding that this is how dangerous fentanyl is. He asked what would have happened if Green had gone home with it on his shirt and it then got on to members of his family.

East Liverpool police Captain Patrick Wright confirmed that Green had followed the correct protocol during the drugs bust and arrest. He added that by Sunday Green was fine again.

Ohio police plan to destroy the vehicle from the drugs bust

Police are now planning to seize the vehicle that was involved in the drug bust and will destroy it. Lane said the people involved in selling the drug have no regard for anyone, not even themselves. Their only priority is their next high. Reportedly police no longer routinely field-test drugs taken in a drug bust. They now double bag any narcotics evidence due to fears police officers could be exposed to fentanyl, or its even deadlier relative, carfentanyl. Sky News reports that carfentanyl is a drug used for animal treatment and is up to 10,000 times more powerful than morphine.