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06.2012

Massachusetts Beverage Business

archivedAtPressTime

GETTING SAUCED ON SANITIZER

It’s time to lock up the hand sanitizer. Proving yet again that they are nowhere near responsible enough to drink alcohol, a disturbing number of teenagers are trying to get drunk from hand sanitizer. Health officials in California have reported the rise of a troubling new trend in Southland emergency rooms: teenagers being treated for alcohol poisoning after drinking hand sanitizer. Apparently, they’re using a method of gleaning alcohol from the sanitizer (which is 62% ethyl alcohol) and no surprise, are ending up in the ER. Dr. Cyrus Rangan, chief of toxicology for the Los Angeles County Health Department, said kids have figured out how to distill the alcohol and turn it into a 12O-proof drink. “Very often, they will get drunk at home or at a party or something like that, and they won’t necessarily be coming to the emergency department, but because of the potency of these products, some of these children will get very highly intoxicated and require a visit to the emergency department,” said Rangan. While there have been cases in recent years of people suffering alcohol poisoning after drinking straight hand sanitizer, Rangan said the method of using salt to separate alcohol from the sanitizer is “like drinking shots of hard liquor”. Deaths have been reported in other states from mixing mouthwash and hand sanitizer together.

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