Verona (WSYR-TV) -- Synthetic drugs are strong and their effects are unpredictable. And though we’ve heard a lot about them in recent months, there’s still a lot many of us don’t know. That’s why communities like Verona are inviting people to learn more.
“The bath salts craze can impact anybody, I mean one thing is the user, but then you also got the general public. What happens if you’re in a store and somebody comes in and starts going ballistic?” said Verona Town Board Councilman Fritz Scherz.
“It’s going to take over and I think we need to get control of it now while we can,” said one resident who attended the forum held Monday night in Verona.
We’ve all seen the headlines: People attacking children, dogs, police and even strangers because of a synthetic drug called bath salts. But what many don’t realize is that these types of incidents are happening more often than we think.
“I didn’t how widespread it was and how prevalent it was in Central New York, so it’s definitely alarming at the very least,” said Nikki Schiebell, who also ttended the forum.
It’s alarming and dangerous. According to doctors, last year, poison control centers in our area took more than 100 phone calls about bath salts; prior to that, there were none.
“Symptom-wise this is definitely something that obviously can kill people and we’ve seen that. So obviously, we’re talking about very disastrous effects,” said Dr. Alexander Garrard, with Upstate Medical University.
There was no argument that the best weapon in the fight against synthetic drugs is knowledge.
“I think that there should definitely be more education out there and the idea of going into the schools and colleges and stuff like that, I think that that’s a great idea because I think the younger generation needs to know a lot about it,” Schiebell said.
Last week, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced a statewide ban on synthetic drugs, including bath salts.