BENTON, Ark. (KTHV) -- Benton police saved a life thanks to drug overdose kits that they worked hard to obtain.
More studies show that drug overdoses are on the rise, with the death rate increasing more than 130 percent. Benton is the only local department with access to these kits.
When they got the call about a possible overdose, this weekend they were able to jump into action. Now, they're hoping to help other police departments do the same.
"It's an epidemic right now," said Lieutenant Terry Fuller. Year after year, the number of people suffering from drug overdose increases.
"Nationwide, it’s happening more and more. Pain clinics and doctors are prescribing too much; that's the reason we've passed things like the Prescription Drug Monitoring Program," Fuller explained.
Fuller said his officers are trained and ready if and when an overdose call comes in. That training was put to the test this weekend, when officers received a call about a man who had overdosed.
"One of the sergeants on shift took the naloxone, and administered it the gentlemen," said Fuller . Bringing him back to life and marking their first time using the kit. Fuller said it is a new initiative that they hope other departments will follow.
Operation Pill Take Back is an initiative by the department that allows for people to come by and drop off old pills and bottles. Police rather it be at the station than on the streets.
Fuller said the department is working with other agencies hoping to get these kits out to all first responders looking to bring the number of victims suffering down nationally.
"We're working with Jacksonville PD, Maumelle PD, Conway PD all have reached out to us for information, and we're diligently trying to help them get their programs up and going."
The Arkansas Department of Human Services received a grant for $3 million to lower the number of drug overdose-related deaths. They'll use policies from Benton police to see what areas need immediate attention.