Montreal public health has issued a warning about a recent spike in deaths due to street drug use.

The number being investigated right now is three times the normal rate.

28 cases of severe poisoning have been recorded, and of those 28 cases 15 were fatal.

The cases involve people who injected, sniffed or inhaled heroin, cocaine or counterfeit pills.

Some of the people affected were occasional drug users.

The health department is warning drug users to not use alone and reduce their usual dose.

They are also warning them to inject slowly and to call 911 immediately if someone reacts differently than usual after taking a drug.