HARTFORD, Conn. (CBSNewYork) – Connecticut reached a grim milestone last year, as deadly overdoses topped the 1,000 mark in 2017.

State Medical Examiner Dr. James Gill told a committee Friday that roughly two-thirds of the cases involved fentanyl, WCBS 880’s Ethan Harp reported. The substance is 50 times more powerful than heroin.

Web Extra: WCBS 880 Special Report Series ‘Killer Tide’

Gill also warned he doesn’t have enough staff to keep up with all the autopsies. He’s hoping to get more funding.

Accidental overdoses are up nearly 300 percent in the past five years.

The number of heroin deaths is expected to decline, but only because Gill believes it’s likely being replaced by fentanyl as the drug of choice.

Cocaine deaths are also on the rise.


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