Arkansas police department apologizes for shopping cart fentanyl report

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Police in Arkansas have issued an apology for an earlier report indicating people can overdose on fentanyl by touching it on shopping carts.

The Leachville Police Dept. had initially shared a post on Facebook warning residents to wipe down handles on their shopping carts to guard against overdose. The post added if someone had fentanyl in their system and used the cart, it can be transferred from their skin to the handle, thereby putting others at risk by touching the cart.

However, an investigation by our sister station KSDK in St. Louis proved that is not the case, as anyone with enough fentanyl in their system for it to transfer from the skin would likely be unconscious or dead, and in no position to come into a grocery store.

The original Facebook post from the department has since been deleted, and this afternoon the person who runs the page apologized for the confusion.

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Fentanyl is normally used as an animal tranquilizer and is 50 times more powerful than heroin. Dozens of addicts have accidently ingested the drug during the recent opioid epidemic, and it is responsible for scores of deaths in Northeast Ohio alone. While is it almost impossible for a person on fentanyl to spread the substance just through touch, the drug itself can cause harm if it makes direct contact with a person's skin.