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Published: Thursday, March 08, 2018 @ 3:37 PM
— A local woman wants more people in the Dayton area to know about low-price test strips that detect fentanyl in street drugs, and proponents say could help opioid abusers avoid fatal overdoses.
In 2017, overdoses claimed 562 people in Montgomery County and 64,000 in the United States the previous year. Tests on 100 of the overdose cases here showed 99 percent tested positive for fentanyl, according to the Montgomery County Coroner’s Office.
Sheila Humphrey presented information this week to the support group Families of Addicts, encouraging the organization to invest in the cheap test strips that look similar to a pregnancy test and cost around $1.
Humphrey, who said she is a peer advocate with a family member in recovery, bought the first round of test strips online out of pocket and said by next week the she’ll be ready to hand out the test strips.
“We’re going to make them available to anyone that needs them, whether its a parent or someone in active addiction or even somebody in recovery if for whatever reason they relapse,” she said.
“We’re interested in learning and exploring,” Families of Addicts founder Lori Erion said Thursday following the meeting.
Erion said Families of Addicts would need more information before incorporating test strips into their efforts. But while Erion said she still has questions, the tests trips seems like they could have a place.
Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid that is 30 to 50 times stronger than heroin and up to 100 times stronger than morphine. When drugs like fentanyl are mixed with heroin, it makes it more potent and unpredictable.
Everyone with an addiction is going to be in a different stage of change, Erion said. A test strip might not mean much for someone who is at a point where they don’t care about living anymore, but it might be helpful for someone who is thinking about treatment.
“No matter what anyone comes up with, it’s not going to be a blanket solution for everybody,” she said.
Humphrey said the strips will be a cheap way to get someone to pause for a second and think about what they are doing.
“That’s another second they are pausing and thinking this over,” she said.
Public Health - Dayton & Montgomery County is researching test strips and seeking guidance from the state, but at this point doesn’t have plans to pass them out.
“It’s being discussed, but there’s no resolution,” Dan Suffoletto, spokesman at Public Health, said.
Erion said one of the layers to the issue is that at this point most heroin has the presence of fentanyl. So unless the test results tell a user how much has been added, they might not provide any new information.
John Hopkins University published a study that shows the low-cost test strips can detect the presence of fentanyl with a high degree of accuracy.
The study cautioned that there can still be false results and that public health experts advise that any drug-checking program should include harm reduction counseling, health education, and connection to services including treatment.
Dennis Cauchon, of Harm Reduction Ohio, which advocates for drug policy reform, was at the Dayton meeting to support making these test strips available, and said a user will still use the heroin, but they might reduce the dose.
Published: Wednesday, June 20, 2018 @ 12:17 PM
Dayton — A professor of toxicology and environmental health says Dayton and Montgomery County residents should expect regular monitoring and public updates about water quality in the wake of test results showing the low-level presence of potentially dangerous chemicals.
However, Rita Loch-Caruso, a professor of toxicology in the Department of Environmental Health Sciences at the University of Michigan, said it’s too soon to recommend buying new household water filtration systems as a cautionary measure.
Loch-Caruso said similar levels of PFAS have been found in Ann Arbor drinking water, where she lives, and she has not purchased a water filtration system.
“It certainly is low,” she said. “I would say it’s something for the people and for the city to start to pay attention to, and to keep paying attention to.”
“We certainly don’t know everything there is know about PFAS (polyfluoralkyl substances), and PFAS are a difficult group of chemicals to study because there are so many variations of them,” Loch-Caruso said.
PFAS is a substance once used as a firefighting foam at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. The chemical has infiltrated groundwater and prompted the shutdown of several Dayton water wells and has now been detected in drinking water bound for customers.
Dayton and Montgomery County are sending customers notices with the results of recent testing of treated water leaving the city’s Ottawa Water Treatment Plant. The results of March testing show PFAS detected at a level of 7 to 13 parts per trillion.
Officials stress that level is significantly below the EPA health advisory limit of 70 ppt (parts per trillion) for lifetime exposure, but it marks the first time PFAS have been detected in water after the treatment process.
Loch-Caruso said that if she lived in Dayton, “I’d pay attention.”
“I would like to see my city doing regular monitoring and publishing the results of the concentrations,” she said. “I would like to see a plan for monitoring — how is the city going to watch this?”
Michael Powell, director of the city of Dayton Water Department, said Wednesday the city has monitored the situation and will continue to test concentration levels.
“I drink it every day,” Powell said of Dayton’s water.
One part per trillion is comparable to finding one grain of sand in an Olympic-sized swimming pool, he said.
The discovered concentration levels “are right on the edge of the detection levels that the latest tests are able to detect,” he said.
In fact, they are so low, the levels are labeled by testing labs as “estimated,” he said.
Joe Tuss, Montgomery County administrator, said county leaders will work to coordinate with Dayton to make sure testing protocols are consistent.
“As the entity that has the community asset that is the well fields and water treatment facilities, we want to make sure we are working in concert with the city and certainly making sure they are taking the lead in any activities around this whole PFAS issue,” Tuss said.
Published: Wednesday, June 20, 2018 @ 8:26 AM
DAYTON — Storm Center 7 Daybreak meteorologist Kirstie Zontini is scheduled to fly with the U.S. Navy Blue Angels Wednesday afternoon.
Zontini will be meeting with the team early this afternoon and will be going through a training program to learn how the team’s F/A-18C Hornet aircraft perform and what she should expect during her flight.
Zontini is scheduled to fly with the team this afternoon around 4:30 p.m.Tweets by KZontiniWHIO
The Blue Angels are making their first appearance at the Vectren Dayton Air Show since 2014.
The fastest speed the team reaches during its performances is about 700 mph.
News Center 7 will bring you the behind the scenes look at the team and Zontini’s flight throughout the day Wednesday.
Published: Tuesday, June 19, 2018 @ 9:20 AM
Updated: Wednesday, June 20, 2018 @ 11:03 AM
DAYTON — The woman killed in a wrong-way crash Tuesday in downtown Dayton is 87-year-old Opal Clouse of Dayton, according to the Montgomery County Coroner’s Office.
Police were dispatched on a report of a crash with one person trapped near West Fifth and South Perry streets about 9 a.m.
According to a Dayton Police Department traffic incident report, a red Toyota Rav driven by Adrian Traylor, 67, was traveling west in the wrong direction on West Fifth. At the intersection of South Perry, Traylor’s vehicle crashed into Clouse’s silver Honda, sending her vehicle into a DP&L pole.
Clouse was pronounced dead at Miami Valley Hospital, according to the report. Traylor was not injured.
Police said excessive speed doesn’t appear to be a factor and it is not uncommon to see drivers travel the wrong way on Dayton’s one-way streets.
“With going the wrong way, there is no traffic device to tell you that you should be slowing down for a red light,” Lt. James Mullins said. “I’m sure the person was driving normal speeds and had the collision.”
Published: Wednesday, June 20, 2018 @ 4:15 AM
Updated: Wednesday, June 20, 2018 @ 11:02 AM
— QUICK-LOOK FORECAST
Today: Another hot and humid day is expected. Highs will be in the lower to middle 80s but with the humidity, it’s going to feel more like the upper 80s, according to Storm Center 7 Meteorologist Brett Collar. The chance for showers and storms returns again this afternoon into the evening. These storms could give way to gusty winds and heavy downpours at times.
Tonight: Any showers and storms that remain this evening should fade away past sunset. Some fog is possible again overnight with temperatures dropping into the mid-60s.
Thursday: The chance for a few showers and storms returns. Highs will be near 80 degrees.
Friday: The best chance for rain moves in. Showers and storms are expected with highs in the lower 80s.
Saturday: More showers and storms are likely at times, though it won’t be an all-day rain event. Highs to start the weekend will be in the upper 70s to lower 80s.
Sunday: More dry time is expected, but there’s still a chance for showers and storms. Highs will be in the lower 80s.