ROCKLAND — There has been a spike in drug overdoses in the past week, with four deaths reported by the Knox County Sheriff’s Office.

The sheriff said state drug enforcement has notified local police agencies that a batch of drugs has come into the state with a chemical that suppresses breathing but does not respond to Narcan. He said that the recent deaths have not been confirmed as being linked to this batch.

The number of deaths in the past week has been more than is normally seen in a month or more, Polky said.

Over the past five days, Rockland Police have responded to four near-fatal overdoses where Narcan was administered and made the difference between life and death, the department said Wednesday, Dec. 14 in a news release.

The department also announced that Rockland police are hosting OPTIONS Maine on Thursday, Jan. 5, at 5:30 p.m. at Rockland City Hall. OPTIONS will be providing free Narcan and training on how and when to use it.

OPTIONS is the Overdose Prevention Through Intensive Outreach Naloxone and Safety initiative is a coordinated effort of the Maine Office of Behavioral Health (OBH) and other state agencies to improve the health of Mainers using substances through harm reduction strategies, helping them on the road to recovery, and dramatically reducing the number of fatal and non-fatal drug overdoses.

OPTIONS will also have information on local recovery resources and the Rockland department hopes to have other liaisons from local recovery centers on hand to offer information and support.

Maine is on track this year to break the 2021 tragic record of 630 drug overdose deaths across the state. Most of these are tied to the deadly drug fentanyl being in other drugs.