'Extreme caution' urged as powdered carfentanil found in Kitchener

The Waterloo Region Integrated Drug Strategy has issued an alert after powdered carfentanil was seized in Kitchener. When in powdered form, the potent drug can be added to other substances.

Powerful opioid in powder form can be added to street drugs

A sample of carfentanil is shown in this handout photo from the RCMP. It is not the same carfentanil that was seized in Kitchener earlier this month. (RCMP)

Powdered carfentanil has been found for the first time in the region, according to police. 

The powdered carfentanil was seized earlier this month during a drug bust in Kitchener. The drug was sent to Health Canada for testing where it was confirmed to be the dangerous opioid. A previous bust in December 2016 saw carfentanil in pill form.

Powdered carfentanil can be added to other substances, which can increase the risk for an overdose, the Waterloo Region Integrated Drug Strategy said in an alert issued Tuesday.

Carfentanil is 10,000 times more powerful than morphine and the alert warned drug users to "exercise caution" when using street drugs.

That included never using drugs alone, not taking the drug at the exact same time as a friend and to have naloxone ready just in case.