A wrong-way driver crashed into a Riverhead police vehicle Wednesday and was revived with a drug overdose antidote after heroin packets and a needle were found in his Jeep, Riverhead police said.
Jeremy T. Rosendahl, 37, was driving east on Route 25 in Riverhead when he veered into the path of oncoming traffic, hitting a police vehicle just east of Mill Road, authorities said.
Police said medics at the scene treated the semiconscious Rosendahl with naloxone, whose brand names include Narcan, a drug that can reverse the effects of opioids including heroin and oxycodone.
Rosendahl, of East Quogue, was treated at Peconic Bay Medical Center in Riverhead, then arrested.
He is expected to be arraigned Thursday on charges of driving while ability impaired by drugs, seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance, criminal possession of a hypodermic instrument and vehicle and traffic violations.
The police officer also was treated at the hospital and released.
Narcan, once used primarily by hospitals and medics, has now become part a vital tool for police officers and families with loved ones addicted to drugs.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Wednesday expanded the availability of Narcan by allowing independent pharmacies to sell it without a prescription. The move builds on state efforts since January to allow sales at chain drugstores, including more than 480 CVS pharmacies and more than 460 Walgreens and Duane Reade pharmacies.
Narcan knocks opiate molecules from the brainstem’s nerve receptors. The drug has no major side effects and is inert when narcotics aren’t present in the body.