Bad batch of fentanyl lands six Iowans in the hospital in one week

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COUNCIL BLUFFS, Iowa-- New cell phone video is out, showing rescue efforts by paramedics and police of three people who were found unconscious outside a gas station this week, suspected of overdosing on fentanyl.

Fentanyl is often mixed with other drugs by dealers. It slows, then stops a person's breathing.

And police warn: even a small dose can be deadly.

Police in Council Bluffs say the three unresponsive people seen in cell phone video (as seen above) are lucky. They are now hospitalized, but alive.

Police were called to a local gas station just before 10 p.m. Wednesday night, after all three were found unconscious. Just 30 minutes later, police were sent to a house a few blocks away, where another unresponsive man was found, also suspected of overdosing on the synthetic opioid.

Forensic experts warn there may be a bad batch of drugs up for sale, and they fear it might spread across the state.

"The goal of these people selling these drugs is to get people more addicted," Douglas County forensic expert Christine Gabig explains. "And you're going to get more addicted if you're ingesting a stronger opiate."

Since Wednesday, there's been two more fentanyl overdoses in the Council Bluffs area. An emergency physician who is treating some of the overdose patients says he's never seen this many suspected fentanyl cases in one week.

Fentanyl is considered 50 times stronger than heroin. The drug gained more notoriety after Prince died from an accidental overdose of it last year.