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Drug overdose deaths down in Ventura County, but percentage from fentanyl spikes upwards

Hal Gatewood
The number of drug overdose deaths is down slightly in Ventura County.

Ventura County reports 278 overdose deaths in 2022.

A new report says the number of overdose deaths in Ventura County is down, but the percentage coming from fentanyl is up.

The Ventura County Medical Examiner’s Office reported 278 overdose deaths in 2022. That’s down 4% from 2021. More than 250 of them were ruled to be accidental overdoses.

But, the number of fentanyl-related deaths showed a sharp increase, with that total up by 10%. Fentanyl has been at the center of a nationwide surge in accidental overdose deaths.

The City of Ventura had the most fatal overdose deaths last year, followed by Oxnard and Simi Valley.

Lance Orozco has been News Director of KCLU since 2001, providing award-winning coverage of some of the biggest news events in the region, including the Thomas and Woolsey brush fires, the deadly Montecito debris flow, the Borderline Bar and Grill attack, and Ronald Reagan's funeral.