- Associated Press - Thursday, August 14, 2014

CONCORD, N.H. (AP) - Gov. Maggie Hassan has declared a state of emergency to allow public health officials to investigate and quarantine synthetic drugs linked to recent overdoses in Manchester and Concord.

Authorities say at least 41 people in the Manchester area have experienced serious medical reactions to synthetic cannabinoids known as “spice” that are chemically engineered substances similar to the active ingredient in marijuana. Concord police have reported at least three cases since Wednesday.

Hassan’s declaration gives the state Department of Health and Human Services the power to investigate, quarantine and require the destruction of the products. She says the department will work with police to quarantine the bubblegum flavor of a product named “Smacked!” Such products are labeled as “herbal incense” but are known to be smoked or brewed.

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