Dramatic footage released by the RCMP shows just how real Alberta's opioid crisis has become.
In the short clip, a Mountie and a civilian can been seen performing CPR on a man in the bed of a moving pickup truck. It is believed the man was overdosing on the drug fentanyl.
According to RCMP, the Sept. 28 video was captured on the dashcam of an RCMP vehicle following behind the pickup truck in the town of Athabasca. The truck was heading to hospital when the footage was taken.
In the video, a Mountie and civilian can be seen giving a man chest compressions in the bed of a pickup truck. (Photo: Screengrab/Alberta RCMP)
"The officer was flagged down by somebody in a pickup truck who were frantically trying to get some help for this man, who was very clearly in medical distress,” Cpl. Laurel Scott told Global News.
"So he assessed the situation, did a bit of a risk assessment, called EMS and decided he had to do something very, very quickly. He couldn’t wait for EMS. I think he realized this may be a patient in medical distress due to a fentanyl overdose."
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CBC News reports that the man in crisis was transferred to an Edmonton-area hospital in serious condition, and has since recovered.
Fentanyl-related overdose deaths have been on the rise in Alberta in recent years — according to Alberta Health, there have been 193 deaths related to fentanyl from January to September of 2016. Last year, there were 257 fentanyl-related deaths reported in Alberta.
In October, police officers and health experts from across the country met in Calgary for a two-day conference to discuss Canada's ongoing opioid crisis.