WOODLAWN, MD. (WJZ) — Baltimore County is combatting opioid overdoses with information.

185 people have died this year in the county just from drug overdoses- at least 780 have survived an overdose.

These numbers are now publicly displayed throughout the county.

“What I also hope is that one day, finally, we would have to tear the signs down. Wouldn’t that be great?” said Toni Torsch, with the Torsch Foundation.

Torsch spoke to WJZ on Wednesday, almost nine years after losing her son Daniel to a drug overdose.

His foundation is one of several private partners paying for eight new overdose awareness signs to be put up around the area.

“We need people to understand the gravity of this epidemic,” said Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski.

Baltimore County follows neighboring counties that have done the same to get people talking.

“We cannot continue this trend of parents losing their children, children losing their parents, siblings losing siblings, and loved ones losing loved ones,” Olszewski said.

Baltimore County Police and Fire said they’ve used the overdose reversal drug naloxone almost 1,400 times already in 2019. That’s almost six times a day.

They added that the numbers are coming just from the police department, and are likely on the low side compared to unreported numbers.

“These numbers represent people,” Olszewski said.

The announcement comes ahead of Saturday, which is Overdose Awareness Day.

“These signs are meant to bring awareness, to show that this crisis, this disease knows no boundaries,” Torsch said.

They’ll be out in police precincts in Towson, Dundalk, Pikesville, White Marsh and in Woodlawn.

Paul Gessler

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