Responders use Narcan to save man's life

Police and firefighters saved the life of a man using Narcan this weekend.

A call for an overdose is hardly new for New Bedford Fire Lt. Peter Clark and his crew.

But the response was different Saturday afternoon.{} "It saved him in a few minutes," Clark said. The responding police officer was carrying the heroin overdose antidote Narcan. She got to the scene on Hillman St. at the same time as firefighters. And Clark sprayed the Narcan into the nose of the overdosing man.

Clark said, "The person was able to come out of the overdose rather quickly."

"We respond to many of these calls. This is not unusual for us. We're very well trained in responding to these." But in the past, they'd have to wait for paramedics to arrive with Narcan, he said.

Under a new program just rolled out in New Bedford, police officers are now carrying it, too, for this very reason, to save time before EMTs get there.

In fact, the police officer had just started carrying Narcan that day. She was just trained with it less than 24 hours before.

New Bedford Police Chief David Provencher told NBC10, "If there were any questions about the value or why we would want to institute the program, I think those answers were provided pretty quickly."

And firefighters, like Peter Clark, who's lost count of the overdose calls he's been to, should be getting Narcan to carry themselves as soon as the end of this week. "It's very important for us to carry it considering the epidemic we have in the city."

The police department hopes to have all its officers trained and carrying Narcan by June.