Federal report: Number of deaths linked to fentanyl skyrocketing

Posted: Updated:
PLAINVIEW -

A new report from the CDC shows an alarming increase in the number of deadly fentanyl overdoses.

The report shows that the number of deaths from synthetic opioids like fentanyl climbed 73 percent from 2014 to 2015, and jumped up 264 percent from 2012 to 2015.

Fentanyl is 50 to 100 times stronger than morphine, and it is used by dealers as a cheap way to make a more potent product, sometimes without the user knowing.

The opioid epidemic has found its way into some quiet and typically safe communities like the one in Plainview where Lee and Lisa Kassler live.

The couple's 26-year-old son, Garrett, passed away from an accidental drug overdose after taking heroin mixed with fentanyl in February, a mix that is becoming more and more common throughout the Northeast.

"They don't think this is going to happen to them," says Lisa Kessler. "I don't think Garrett thought for one moment it was going to be in it."

The family says they had resources available and paid close attention to Garrett, but even that wasn't enough. They say that there is no way to end this opioid crisis in the blink of an eye, but they'd like to see stricter penalties on dealers as a start.

"It's in the neighborhood. And people need to open up and realize this could happen to them," says Lee Kessler. "If it could happen to us it could happen to everybody."

  • Long Island Top StoriesMore>>

  • NTSB takes over probe of Lynbrook LIRR platform death

    NTSB takes over probe of Lynbrook LIRR platform death

    Thursday, April 26 2018 11:52 AM EDT2018-04-26 15:52:21 GMT
    The federal government is taking over the investigation into the death of a man at the Long Island Rail Road station in Lynbrook.The federal government is taking over the investigation into the death of a man at the Long Island Rail Road station in Lynbrook.

    Federal investigators from the National Transportation Safety Board are taking over the investigation into the death of a man at the Long Island Rail Road station in Lynbrook.

    Federal investigators from the National Transportation Safety Board are taking over the investigation into the death of a man at the Long Island Rail Road station in Lynbrook.

  • What's in the Water: Eco-friendly water treatment in Suffolk

    What's in the Water: Eco-friendly water treatment in Suffolk

    Thursday, April 26 2018 9:49 AM EDT2018-04-26 13:49:42 GMT
    Suffolk County is promoting an eco-friendly water treatment device that replaces cesspools or septic tanks in an effort to help clean up Long Island's groundwater and save its bays.Suffolk County is promoting an eco-friendly water treatment device that replaces cesspools or septic tanks in an effort to help clean up Long Island's groundwater and save its bays.

    Suffolk County is promoting an eco-friendly water treatment device that replaces cesspools or septic tanks in an effort to help clean up Long Island's groundwater and save its bays.

    Suffolk County is promoting an eco-friendly water treatment device that replaces cesspools or septic tanks in an effort to help clean up Long Island's groundwater and save its bays.

  • Reward offered in Uniondale armed home invasion

    Reward offered in Uniondale armed home invasion

    Thursday, April 26 2018 5:41 AM EDT2018-04-26 09:41:05 GMT
    Detectives say on March 31, three Hispanic men broke into a home on Harrison Street.Detectives say on March 31, three Hispanic men broke into a home on Harrison Street.
    Detectives say on March 31, three Hispanic men broke into a home on Harrison Street.Detectives say on March 31, three Hispanic men broke into a home on Harrison Street.

    Detectives say on March 31, three Hispanic men broke into a home on Harrison Street.
     

    Detectives say on March 31, three Hispanic men broke into a home on Harrison Street.
     

  • SlideshowsSlideshowsMore>>

  • Global Premiere for 'Avengers: Infinity War'

    Global Premiere for 'Avengers: Infinity War'

    The Los Angeles Global Premiere for Marvel Studios? "Avengers: Infinity War" on April 23, 2018 in Hollywood, California.The Los Angeles Global Premiere for Marvel Studios? "Avengers: Infinity War" on April 23, 2018 in Hollywood, California.
    The Los Angeles Global Premiere for Marvel Studios? "Avengers: Infinity War" on April 23, 2018 in Hollywood, California.The Los Angeles Global Premiere for Marvel Studios? "Avengers: Infinity War" on April 23, 2018 in Hollywood, California.

    The Los Angeles Global Premiere for Marvel Studios' "Avengers: Infinity War" was on April 23, 2018 in Hollywood, California.

    The Los Angeles Global Premiere for Marvel Studios' "Avengers: Infinity War" was on April 23, 2018 in Hollywood, California.

  • President Trump hosts 1st state dinner

    President Trump hosts 1st state dinner

    U.S. President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump welcomed French President Emmanuel Macron and French first lady Brigitte Macron for the state dinner during visit to the White House.U.S. President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump welcomed French President Emmanuel Macron and French first lady Brigitte Macron for the state dinner during visit to the White House.

    U.S. President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump welcomed French President Emmanuel Macron and French first lady Brigitte Macron for the state dinner during visit to the White House.

    U.S. President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump welcomed French President Emmanuel Macron and French first lady Brigitte Macron for the state dinner during visit to the White House.

  • Duke and Duchess of Cambridge welcome baby boy

    Duke and Duchess of Cambridge welcome baby boy

    It's the third child for Kate and Prince William, and he's fifth in line to the British throne.

    It's the third child for Kate and Prince William, and he's fifth in line to the British throne.

sorry to interrupt
your first 20 are free
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please enjoy 20 complimentary views of articles, photos, and videos during the next 30 days.
you have reached your 20 view limit
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please login or create an account to continue enjoying News12.
Our sign-up page is undergoing maintenance and is not currently available. However, you will be given direct access to news12.com while we complete our upgrade.
When we are back up and running you will be prompted at that time to complete your sign in. Until then, enjoy the local news, weather, traffic and more that's "as local as local news gets."