A mixture of heroin, potent painkillers and elephant tranquilizers is the latest fad for drug addicts. It can be very lethal and people all over the country are dying from it. Police are calling the mixture “Gray Death.” The really scary thing is that you don’t have to take it in order to die because it can be absorbed through your skin and you need only touch a place where some has spilled. Addicts often take their drugs in public areas including bathrooms.
Investigators are finding samples of the fatal blend in Alabama, Georgia and Ohio, and the cocktail is described as looking like a concrete mix with varying consistencies. Officials in Georgia said they’ve had 50 overdose cases involving gray death over the past three months centered around Atlanta. While coroners in Ohio report a steady increase in gray death overdose cases since the year began, the Associated Press reported Thursday.
Gray death combinations will vary, but include heroin, fentanyl, carfentanil and a synthetic opioid called U-47700. Fentanyl is an opiate-based painkiller roughly 50 to 100 times more powerful than morphine. Carfentanil is roughly 10,000 times stronger than morphine and used for tranquilizing elephants. U-47700 is less common, but listed as one of the most dangerous substances regulated by the Drug Enforcement Administration.
“Gray death is one of the scariest combinations that I have ever seen in nearly 20 years of forensic chemistry drug analysis,” Deneen Kilcrease, manager of the chemistry section at the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, told The Associated Press.
Officials warn that users often do not know what they are buying when they are sold the mixture. Authorities also note powders like carfentanil can be absorbed through the skin, posing deadly risks to anyone in the presence of the substance.