WILLAMINA, Ore. (TBEN) — A student and a deputy were treated at a hospital Tuesday after being likely exposed to fentanyl at an Oregon high school, authorities said.
The Yamhill County Sheriff’s Office said in a statement Wednesday that one of their deputies went to Portland’s southwest Willamina Middle School on Tuesday to follow up on a case and was asked by a staff member to help check a bathroom on a suspicious odor.
The sheriff’s deputy went to the classroom’s modular bathroom, noticed a strong acrid odor and requested that staff and students evacuate the classroom, the sheriff’s office said.
The sheriff’s deputy began showing symptoms indicating a possible overdose, and some students also reported feeling unwell, the sheriff’s office said.
Employees of the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde Emergency Services responded, providing assistance to one student and checking on two others. A student was taken by ambulance to a hospital in Salem. The deputy was also treated at a hospital after a supervisor saw that the deputy needed medical attention.
The deputy reported chest tightness with limited ability to breathe, along with other symptoms, and showed confusion and an inability to speak coherently, the sheriff’s office said.
The sheriff’s office said a student may have burned what is currently believed to be counterfeit M30 pills containing fentanyl.
The Willamina School District notified parents and the affected classroom was ventilated and thoroughly cleaned, the sheriff’s office said.
Multiple documented overdoses of fentanyl have occurred in the county in the past four days, one of which was fatal, according to the sheriff’s office. That is why authorities are concerned about a possible regional distribution of a particularly potent batch of counterfeit pills.