While some communities across New York are reporting a resurgence in synthetic marijuana overdoses, no reported overdoses have occurred here in Cortland County. Local agencies are monitoring the situation.
Area hospitals have reported a surge of patients seeking emergency care after using synthetic marijuana. The drug has been reported to cause seizures, tremors, high blood pressure and violent behavior.
A couple years ago there was a major push to crack down on synthetic marijuana. Laws were passed to criminalize sale and possession, shops were raided and interest in the drug seemed to fade.
Following overdose linked to the drug in New York City and Syracuse the state issued an alert. Synthetic marijuana has sent more than 160 people to hospitals since April 8th.
Kim McRae Friedman with Cortland Prevention Resources a local drug interdiction agency says they are working with local law enforcement, Poison Control, and others to track the extent of the problem here in Cortland County.
Law enforcement is monitoring stores that used to sell the drug prior to criminalization. Friedman says parents should monitor their kids and keep an eye out for the products which are often labeled as spike, spice, or incense.