JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV) – On Sunday, August 21, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) will recognize National Fentanyl Prevention and Awareness Day,

“Fentanyl is the single deadliest drug threat our nation has ever encountered,” said Administrator Anne Milgram. “From large cities to rural America, no community is safe from the presence of fentanyl. DEA is proud to work with families who have been affected by fentanyl poisonings to spread the word and to save lives.”

“Fentanyl is the primary driver in this alarming increase in overdose deaths America is facing today,” said DEA Special Agent in Charge Brad L. Byerley. “DEA will continue to work with our law enforcement and community partners to spread awareness about the dangers of fentanyl. Collectively, we will continue to combine our resources to aggressively pursue the drug cartels who are ruthlessly flooding our country with this deadly drug.”

Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid that is approximately 50 times more potent than heroin and 100 times more potent than morphine. It is inexpensive, widely available, highly addictive — and potentially lethal.

According to officials, many fentanyl poisoning victims are unaware that fentanyl is in the substance they are ingesting.

According to the CDC, an estimated 107,622 people in the United States died of drug overdoses and poisonings in 2021, with 67 percent of those deaths involving synthetic opioids like fentanyl.

Only two milligrams of fentanyl is a potentially lethal dose.