Drug alert warns of beige down street drug found in Brandon

Advocates are warning people to take precautions after a street drug, which naloxone has no effect on, was recently found in Brandon for the first time.

A drug alert from Street Connections issued on Monday says bromazolam, also known by the street names of beige down or beige pebble, was recently confiscated and tested by the Health Canada – Drug Analysis Service.

It is the first report from the service of this drug in Brandon.

The alert said the drug is a benzodiazepine and was found in powdered form. The drug can cause respiratory depression and sedation, and may cause a person to lose consciousness. The same sample also tested positive for the opioid fentanyl.

Solange Machado, the network coordinator for the Brandon Harm Reduction Network, said she just got the alert for the drug this week, but said she has received reports from users who say that it has been around, just not very frequently.

Machado said the difference between bromazolam and fentanyl means treatment for drug toxicity is different.

“(Bromazolam) is not an opioid. Naloxone does not work on it, so that’s kind of the one of the bigger risks,” she said, adding mixing it with fentanyl can pose a bigger risk.

“Mixing substances is always dangerous, especially mixing these two particular substances like fentanyl with bromazolam could pose more of an overdose risk.”

Machado said in the event of bromazolam toxicity, the best course of action is to call 9-1-1 and administer CPR as needed.

She said there are other things people can do to reduce risk, such as never using drugs alone, and starting slow with a low dose.

She said it is also important that people get correct and reviewed information about the drugs they are using.

“I think it’s just important that people who use drugs are aware of the substances out in the community and aware of the risks it may have so that people can be as safe as possible,” she said.

“The purpose of this alert isn’t to scare people or create fear, but rather to keep our community members safe and help prevent drug toxicity.”

More information about the drug alert can be found online.

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