LAMAR COUNTY, MS (WDAM) - Another law enforcement agency in the Pine Belt will soon be carrying another life-saving tool when they hit the streets.
The Lamar County Sheriff's Department purchased a shipment of the overdose reversal drug, Narcan.
"Hopefully it will just be a good thing for the public because it's sad to say, we're seeing a lot more opioid-based drugs in our society," Lamar County Sheriff Danny Rigel said.
With the number of overdose deaths from opioids increasing each year, more and more law enforcement agencies are carrying Narcan.
The department's shipment was purchased through a grant for roughly $3,200.
"We can add it to our belt to try to help people, because a lot of times we are the first ones there, before the first responders, before the ambulance crews, we're out there 24/7, so it's a good chance we're going to be the first one on the scene," Rigel said.
The drug can reverse the effects of an overdose and buy precious time for additional help to arrive.
"If someone is having an opiate incident, then the spray, Narcan, can potentially reverse the effects until we can get them medical treatment," Rigel said. "Seconds matter…minutes matter, so the quicker we can get to them and provide them with this service, there's a good chance we're going to save a life."
The drug, even if given in the wrong scenario, is not harmful.
"It does not harm you if you're not having (an overdose), it's like nasal spray, so it doesn't harm you if you're not having an opiate incident, but if you are, it can save your life," Rigel said.
Rigel said it will be a few weeks before the kits are given to each of the deputies after a few days of training.
"We are in the training stages now, because we can't administer anything without the proper training for liability purposes and stuff like that, so we're in the process of doing that," Rigel said.