There were 170 lives lost to drug overdoses in BC in May, the highest monthly total ever in British Columbia.
The deaths surpass the previous high of 161 reported in December 2016.
There were 18 deaths in North Shore and the Coast Garibaldi area, which includes Sea to Sky and the Sunshine Coast communities.
Meanwhile, the towns experiencing the highest number of drug overdoses so far in 2020 are Vancouver, Surrey and Victoria.
BC government said the post-mortem data suggest an increase in the number of cases with extreme fentanyl concentrations in April and May 2020 compared with previous months.
There have been 554 illicit drug deaths in 2020 so far in British Columbia.
“The drug supply is unpredictable and highly toxic, and has led to a sustained increase in fatal and non-fatal overdoses from smoking and injection in recent months,” said Dr. Jane Buxton, harm reduction lead for the BC Centre for Disease Control.
The BC Centre for Disease Control recently posted an alert on increased drug toxicity reported throughout B.C. with spikes in fatal and non-fatal overdose events through smoking and injecting.
The Provincial Health Services Authority has also launched a new Lifeguard app to help prevent overdoses last month.
According to BC Emergency Health Services, paramedics respond to an average of 2,000 overdose calls per month in British Columbia.