The meth coast

Fentanyl is not the No. 1 cause of overdose deaths out West

Fentanyl is justifiably getting a lot of press for the alarming rise in number of deaths as a result of overdoses of the drug—27,299 in the U.S. in 2017 (the most recent year reported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention). But a report released last week by the National Center for Health Statistics showed that the vast majority of those deaths are actually back East. In that same year, 24,813 of those fentanyl-overdose deaths happened east of the Mississippi. Out West, the No. 1 overdose killer is methamphetamine. Here are the top 10 drugs by overdose death in California’s four-state region (with Nevada, Arizona and Hawaii).