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Health experts debunk fentanyl poisoning from shopping carts after police Facebook post

Toxicology experts from Riverside Hospital along with The American College of Toxicology tell ABC 6/FOX 28 the risk of become sick from touching items like shopping cart handles with drug residue is low. (WSYX/WTTE)

COLUMBUS, Ohio (WSYX/WTTE) -- A Facebook post about the potential for fentanyl poisoning from the new police chief in Leachville, Arkansas has sparked a lot of debate.

Spokespersons for Chief Joni Seball said the top cop thought she was doing the public a service by posting a Facebook message advising all people to wipe down shopping carts with antibacterial wipes to avoid possible exposure and poisoning from fentanyl.

The drug is at least 40 percent more powerful than heroin, according to health officials.

The post got so much feedback, the department said the chief printed an apology saying that the post came from another source.

Toxicology experts from Riverside Hospital along with The American College of Toxicology tell ABC 6/FOX 28 the risk of become sick from touching items like shopping cart handles with drug residue is low. They do recommend using the wipes to help reduce germ exposure.

"As a nurse, we used two people to make sure it was administered correctly, and now to see it mixed in with other drugs, it's terrible" said Kelly Dodd.

Dodd was one of hundreds from 40 congregations who met Monday evening at Christ the King Catholic Church to discuss ways to address the city's biggest problems, including drugs and crime.

Dodd said the evening, sponsored by a group called "Building Responsibility Equality and Dignity" or BREAD, is vital because she has a loved one battling opioid addiction.

"I believe there is hope." Dodd added.

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