STREAMING NOW: Watch Now

Gas station installs blue lights to combat drug use

An unlikely front line has emerged in America's opioid epidemic: ...

Posted: Dec 8, 2017 5:21 AM
Updated: Dec 8, 2017 5:21 AM

An unlikely front line has emerged in America's opioid epidemic: public restrooms.

Coded door locks and biohazard boxes are just a few of the ways store owners are making their bathrooms safer.

The new lights being tested at a Sheetz gas station in a New Kensington, Pennsylvania, bathroom are another attempt to do just that.

"It's a little jarring at first. ... You go into a bathroom, you expect it to be well-lit," Nathan Murray Sinicki, of New Kensington, told CNN affiliate WPXI.

But it's not.

It's blue.

Sheetz is working with the support of the New Kensington Police Department, installing blue recessed lighting to combat drug use in the community.

Officials in New Kensington tell WPXI the blue lights are a deterrent because they make it difficult for addicts to see their veins.

The light system "is designed to help our customers and employees avoid dangerous situations," said Nick Ruffner, Sheetz public relations manager.

"I heard some people think it was rather creepy or daunting going in there. I don't think that's the case. If it's helping the drug epidemic going on in New Kensington, I think that's good," Sinicki said.

In 2016, Westmoreland County had 174 overdose deaths, with the numbers in 2017 set to eclipse that.

"One of our highest priorities at Sheetz is creating a safe and secure environment for our customers and employees," Ruffner said.

James Thompson, a local resident agrees, kind of, "I'm in favor of it if it's gonna work out. Then again, they could go somewhere else and do it."

Right now the lights are being tested at just this store, "It is too early to see the full results at this time or discuss any plans to expand this test," Ruffner said.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 252475

Reported Deaths: 5521
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto17120175
Hinds16207322
Harrison13353193
Rankin10689211
Jackson10303183
Lee8796141
Madison8232162
Jones6288110
Forrest5949119
Lauderdale5847180
Lowndes5355116
Lafayette494292
Lamar484165
Washington4777123
Bolivar3966108
Oktibbeha392480
Panola368378
Pontotoc362853
Monroe3533105
Warren348498
Union343060
Marshall341665
Neshoba3370152
Pearl River327899
Leflore3002105
Lincoln297085
Sunflower282669
Tate270862
Hancock266559
Alcorn263253
Itawamba262459
Pike262077
Scott246245
Prentiss245052
Yazoo244355
Copiah240849
Tippah240450
Simpson234867
Leake230564
Coahoma230054
Grenada217770
Covington211371
Marion210672
Adams204670
Winston200164
Wayne199630
George199038
Attala193559
Newton191342
Tishomingo184459
Chickasaw183644
Jasper169735
Holmes168567
Clay159033
Stone142320
Tallahatchie140134
Clarke138660
Calhoun135721
Smith120123
Yalobusha116534
Walthall111836
Noxubee110322
Greene109729
Montgomery109434
Carroll104221
Lawrence102417
Perry101631
Amite97725
Webster92224
Tunica86321
Claiborne86125
Jefferson Davis84125
Humphreys82924
Benton81523
Kemper77120
Quitman6888
Franklin66415
Choctaw60313
Wilkinson58325
Jefferson53819
Sharkey42717
Issaquena1596
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 422598

Reported Deaths: 6120
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson62039921
Mobile30225548
Madison27052186
Tuscaloosa20728267
Montgomery18978305
Shelby18504114
Baldwin16251182
Lee12465101
Morgan12233113
Etowah11735168
Calhoun11122200
Marshall10191107
Houston8598148
Cullman8023105
Limestone800274
Elmore7836101
DeKalb768397
Lauderdale754683
St. Clair7535120
Talladega6166108
Walker5897174
Jackson580341
Colbert532073
Blount530483
Autauga518455
Coffee441056
Dale396181
Franklin366248
Chilton336165
Russell330310
Covington327268
Escambia316842
Dallas303196
Chambers282769
Clarke281433
Tallapoosa2616107
Pike248729
Marion245650
Lawrence243647
Winston226635
Bibb215147
Geneva201435
Marengo199029
Pickens196531
Hale175842
Barbour172936
Butler169658
Fayette168226
Cherokee160330
Henry153621
Monroe145217
Randolph139835
Washington137626
Clay126145
Crenshaw118744
Lamar118019
Cleburne117423
Macon114735
Lowndes110335
Wilcox103121
Bullock99028
Perry97419
Conecuh94420
Sumter89026
Greene76023
Coosa60515
Choctaw51224
Out of AL00
Unassigned00
Tupelo
Clear
31° wxIcon
Hi: 58° Lo: 30°
Feels Like: 31°
Columbus
Clear
31° wxIcon
Hi: 58° Lo: 30°
Feels Like: 31°
Oxford
Clear
25° wxIcon
Hi: 55° Lo: 26°
Feels Like: 25°
Starkville
Clear
28° wxIcon
Hi: 58° Lo: 31°
Feels Like: 28°
WTVA Radar
WTVA Temperatures
WTVA Severe Weather