Informed Families Catalyst

U.S. Launches New Weapon in War on Fentanyl

Posted by Informed Families on April 30, 2023 at 10:05 PM

The tragedy of fentanyl continues killing Americans: more than 107,000 in 2021, according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) figures.

Screenshot 2023-04-30 at 10.00.59 PM

This is why the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has launched Operation Blue Lotus to disrupt fentanyl traffickers.

 Last month, the campaign had stopped more than 900 pounds of fentanyl from coming into the U.S. in its first week of operation, DHS announced. The program led to 18 seizures, 16 federal arrests, and two state arrests. It also intercepted 700 pounds of methamphetamines and over 100 pounds of cocaine.

New Tools

According to The Washington Post, the campaign uses new scanning technology, more drug-sniffing dogs, and other advanced equipment to increase seizures. This includes multi-energy portal equipment known as “non-intrusive inspection” (NII) technology, which uses X-rays to quickly screen commercial and passenger vehicles for suspicious irregularities that could signal hidden drugs.

Legal U.S. ports of entry (POE) in southern Arizona are now responsible for more than half of all the fentanyl seized along the U.S. southern border, according to the latest U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CPB) data, surpassing San Diego as the main POE for fentanyl smuggling. Traffickers hide packages of fentanyl in hidden vehicle compartments, in loads of produce, or duct-taped to passengers’ bodies, The Post reported.

Calling fentanyl the “drug of death,” Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas announced Operation Blue Lotus during a joint visit with Arizona Governor Katie Hobbs (D).

“We are matching this unprecedented challenge with unprecedented solutions,” Mayorkas said.

“In the past two years, DHS has seized more fentanyl than the previous five years combined,” he said, adding, “But we must do more.”

Keeping Kids Safe

Indeed. Fentanyl is easy to smuggle because it’s so small—and potent. Much of it is showing up on the street disguised as prescription pills sold online and through social media, according to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).

Here are some things you can do to help keep your children away from this potentially deadly drug.

     1. Get information on fentanyl from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) here.

     2. Talk to kids about the dangers of fentanyl. Stress the fact that a prescription drug they get from friends or online might contain fentanyl no matter what the sellers claim.

     3. The DEA also provides tips on how to keep kids safe here.

Topics: drugs, opioids, fentanyl

About Us

We teach people how to say no to drugs and how to make healthy choices. To reduce the demand for drugs, Informed Families has focused its efforts on educating and mobilizing the community, parents and young people in order to change attitudes. In this way we counteract the pressures in society that condone and promote drug and alcohol use and abuse. The organization educates thousands of families annually about how to stay drug and alcohol free through networking and a variety of programs and services .

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