AUSTIN, Texas (KETK) – Gov. Greg Abbott said Thursday that it is time for “all hands on deck” when it comes to the fentanyl situation in the nation.

Since the start of Operation Lone Star last March, Texas has seized over 288 million lethal doses of fentanyl throughout the state, according to a statement from Abbott’s office. Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid similar to morphine but 50 to 100 times stronger.

Abbott said it is an “extraordinarily dangerous and deadly situation,” with over 1,300 people dead from fentanyl this year in Texas. Many victims take a pill recreationally that is not identified as fentanyl and end up getting poisoned by the hidden substance.

“This is not a fentanyl overdose,” Abbott said. “This is poisoning by fentanyl, which we want to make a murder crime in the state of Texas.”

There are laws in other states that Texas wants to adopt, he said. These laws would make it a felony to pass a pill out to someone who then dies from it.

“Coming from the states up, we can send a message to the federal government, send a message to America, but most important send a message to the people who are trafficking these drugs– if you traffic these drugs and you give one of these drugs and somebody dies from it, you could be prosecuted for murder. That’s the approach Texas wants to take,” Abbott said.

He highlighted where he thought President Joe Biden fell short in handling drugs like fentanyl coming into the nation, saying that Texas is stepping up “to do the government’s job” in securing the border.

“Texas will continue to step up, but we need all of America to step up,” Abbott said.

Abbott said that for people between age group of 18 to 45, the leading cause of death last year was fentanyl.

“When we have fentanyl coming across the border, it doesn’t stay at the border, it doesn’t even stay in Texas. It goes to communities across the United States of America,” Abbott said.

He said they took the unprecedented step to amass 10,000 national guard and DPS officers to seize the drugs coming over the border and to make arrests.

Abbott did not go into detail about what exactly making it a murder crime would entail.