MORE than 400 suspected drug deaths were recorded between November and February, figures show.

Statistics released by Public Health Scotland – reported based on initial investigations by Police Scotland – show an average of 96 suspected deaths every month between December and February – the same figure recorded in the same period the year before.

A total of 116 deaths were recorded in November, 93 in December, 108 in January and 86 in February, according to the Rapid Action Drug Alerts and Response system, totalling 403 during the period.

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The average weekly number of suspected deaths sat at 22, lower than the same period in 2020-21 when it was 33 and around the same level as the previous year.

Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Alex Cole-Hamilton said the figures “show that Scotland’s drug death catastrophe continues to rumble on”.

He added: “The Scottish Government has made a series of grand proclamations but it is still struggling to make a dent in drugs deaths.

“Scottish Liberal Democrats are calling for the immediate introduction of specialist drug commissions, the decriminalisation of drug misuse, and for safe consumption spaces to be available across the country.

“The Scottish Government needs to offer families more than cheap talk.”