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There has been a dramatic rise in deaths this year from fentanyl in San Luis Obispo County. The news comes from the county’s public health department, which says 10 people have died since May.

Another opium poppy field found on the Central Coast

Jun 15, 2018
Santa Cruz County Sheriff's Office

Another illegal opium poppy field has been discovered on the Central Coast. This ninth field was found in Santa Cruz County. It’s located by a vacant house on Riverside Drive just outside Watsonville.

According to the Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s Office, the home has been vacant for about three months. A bank owns the house. Someone working for the bank noticed the illegal opium poppy plants and contacted the Sheriff’s Office.

In 2013 ACTION reported more than three quarters of the people they interviewed in San Luis Obispo County were concerned about drug, tobacco and alcohol abuse. Among these groups of drugs, rates of opiate addiction across the nation are increasing at alarming rates.  Last year, the Drug Abuse Warning Network (DAWN) noted a dramatic 183% increase in emergency room intakes associated with pharmaceutical opiates and opioids from 2004 to 2011. Heroin intakes also increased by 21%.