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‘HAZARDOUS BATCH’: Police issue urgent warning to heroin users in Watford

 Published on: 12th March 2024   |   By: News Bulletin   |   Category: Uncategorized

Police investigating a hazardous batch of heroin currently circulating in Watford have issued an urgent safety warning to users in the town.

Officers are urging the community to be aware that individuals are believed to be supplying synthetic opioids under the guise of heroin, which are often far more potent and could lead to overdose, cardiac arrest or death.

Police are aware of several people who have suffered medical episodes after taking suspected synthetic opioids in the town, and they are working hard to minimise the availability of these substances.

Watford Chief Inspector Andy Wiseman said: “We would never condone the use of illegal substances. We are realistic and understand that people do suffer with addictions, so it is our duty to warn them that there could be a dangerous substance in the drugs they are taking.

“Keeping people in Hertfordshire safe from harm is paramount to our role as the police. This means issuing this warning so people are able to make an informed choice and exercise caution.”

Chief Inspector Wiseman added: “We’re pleased to report that we have already recovered some of these dangerous substances and made three arrests as part of our investigation, which remains ongoing. In addition, we are liaising with our colleagues in the Community Safety Partnership who support those with drug addiction, so they’re able to share our messaging directly to their service users.

“Since the wider investigation was launched, three arrests have been made in connection with the supply of class A drugs in Watford, but it’s important to note that at this stage, we are not treating this development as linked to the reported medical episodes.”

The county’s Community Safety Unit is offering the following advice:

  • Go low and slow: Be extra cautious about the sources from which you get your drugs, and about the drugs you are taking; maybe starting with just a quarter hit of a new supply.
  • Do not use alone: Make sure that someone you trust is present and equipped with a couple of naloxone kits.
  • If using with others, it’s best if only one person uses the drug first and uses less as a test dose.
  • Don’t mix drugs: Using more than one drug increases your risks of overdose, including mixing with alcohol.
  • Naloxone won’t work on non-opiate drugs but it’s always worth having kits available anyway. If in doubt, you can use naloxone in any overdose situation. There have been reports of increased doses of Naloxone needed when drugs contain synthetic opioids.
  • Look after your friends: Look out for the signs of an overdose, e.g. loss of consciousness, shallow or absent breathing, ‘snoring’ or loud ‘rasping’, and/or blue lips or fingertips.
  • Be prepared to call immediately for an ambulance if you suspect someone has overdosed.

For further support and advice, visit the SpectrumTalk To Frank or Hertfordshire County Council’s websites.

If you have any information about the supply of class A drugs in Watford, you can report it online at, use online web chat at or call the non-emergency number 101.

Alternatively, you can stay 100 per cent anonymous by contacting the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 or via their untraceable online form at

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