Drug overdose deaths in Maine increased by 11 percent last year, with a total of 418 deaths, according to data released Thursday by the attorney general’s office.
“Forty-two more people died last year than the year before,” says Attorney General Janet Mills. “You know, every death is preventable. Every one of those deaths is more than a statistic.”
Mills says the higher number is driven by an increase in fentanyl-related deaths. Traffickers often lace heroin with the synthetic opioid because it's cheaper, but it’s 50-100 times more potent and far more lethal.