Thursday, May 31, 2012

VSA Headlines: May 2012 

UK

Legal highs being used by children in Bexley: Canisters containing nitrous oxide, which are designed for making whipped cream, are reportedly being inhaled by kids as young as 11 to starve their brains of oxygen for "a buzz".

Warning over 'legal highs' (Somerset): The warnings come following the recent discovery of around 30 empty nitrous oxide canisters near the shelter at Collett Park in Shepton by Quadron Services Ltd's park staff.

UKRAINE

Marcel Theroux: life with Ukraine's street children: The dirt floor underfoot is scattered with empty yellow tubes. They're from a brand of Ukrainian glue that's used for resoling shoes, but when inhaled from a plastic bag, the fumes suppress feelings of cold and hunger and produce auditory and visual hallucinations. They also cause brain damage.

US

Education May Protect Brain From Exposure to Solvents: People with less than a high school education who work with solvents may have problems with their thinking skills later in life, according to a [Harvard University] study of people in France.

Medford man indicted in death of 14-year-old girl who inhaled helium at teen party (Medford, OR): A 32-year-old Medford man has been indicted on a negligent homicide charge in the death of a 14-year-old Eagle Point girl who died after inhaling helium at party.

18-year-old charged with arson (Las Cruces, NM): Investigators said Galvan and two other teenagers were in the backyard of the abandoned home, and were huffing lighter fluid in an attempt to achieve a chemical high. Another arrest for arson was made in Douglas County, GA, where Men huffing burned historic mill.

Inhalant blamed in crash injuring school worker (Livingston County, MI): The sheriff's department is seeking charges against a 16-year-old Michigan high school student who struck a security officer with a vehicle in a school parking lot.

Probation set for woman who huffed aerosol in front of child (New Auburn, WI): A rural New Auburn woman will spend two years on probation for huffing from an aerosol can in the presence of her young son in the bathroom of an Eau Claire store.

Lund pleads guilty to DUI causing injury, aggravated assault (Laramie, WY): Police found two 3.5 ounce compressor air canisters of Maxell Blast Away Multi-Purpose Canned Air in Lund’s vehicle. When asked about the canisters, Lund admitted to inhaling the cleaner prior to the accident.

Northwest Arkansas Police See Increase in Huffing Cases: Fayetteville police said there is cause for concern about a recent trend. They said they are seeing more and more cases of people inhaling chemicals to get high.

“Huffing” arrests spark changes in HVAC equipment: In an effort to thwart attempts to inhale Freon from HVAC units, Advent Air Conditioning recently announced that it will now include locking refrigerant caps on all new construction and replacement HVAC work, effective immediately.  The locking caps had been offered as optional equipment since 2011.

FDA warns breathable caffeine maker over label: U.S. regulators warned the maker of inhalable caffeine product AeroShot Pure Energy over false or misleading labeling, and for contradictory statements about using the product with alcohol.

Council Approves Stricter Drug Rules (Twin Falls, ID): The Twin Falls City Council unanimously approved an ordinance change Tuesday that tightens the city’s ability to crack down on synthetic marijuana and other inhalants.

CANADA

Huffing thought cause of explosion (Kamsack, SK): An explosion inside a vehicle sent three youths to hospital Monday night. RCMP believe the explosion was caused by the three youths - two 13-year old girls and one 12-year-old girl - who were huffing propane in the car.

AUSTRALIA

Sniffers hit pits in rush on spray deodorants (Alice Springs, NT): The Central Australian Youth Link Up Service says, over the past fortnight, it has found more than 100 deodorant cans that have been used for sniffing.

City's chrome stats still way too high: Monash has been replaced as the chroming capital of Victoria ... the new problem centre, the City of Melbourne, had a rise of about 5per cent. (In Maribyrnong "inhalant incidents [requiring an ambulance call out] doubled to 14 - second only to the City of Melbourne")

Youth 'chroming' on the rise in Mount Isa: The department's Sandra Kennedy says a federally-funded program is in place in the city aimed at reducing the incidence of 'chroming'. "We see children as young as six years old affected by chroming."

Pressure grows to force Opal fuel sales in bush: The Northern Territory Government has backed a call for petrol stations to be forced to sell the non-aromatic Opal Fuel in areas where petrol sniffing is a problem. However, Katherine mayor questions calls for Opal roll-out and Forced sales of Opal fuel a 'legal minefield' says the Federal Minister for Indigenous Health, Warren Snowdon.

NEW ZEALAND

Huffing death a wake-up to young friends: Friends of a 12-year-old boy who died while "huffing" butane say his death has made them realise how dangerous sniffing the gas is.  The death has led to growing calls for retailers to take more responsibility over the sale of solvents to young people and for butane sales to be regulated. However, Prime Minister John Key says Darius' death is tragic, but he's not convinced new legislation would make a difference. A drug counsellor has described the issue of youth abusing solvents as being on the "same spectrum" as alcohol abuse and coroners have raised the issue that despite "dealing with 28 butane deaths from 2007 to 2011, resulting in numerous recommendations" little action has been taken because their recommendations are not mandatory.

Huffing victim's mum calls for action: The mother of a Christchurch boy who died after huffing has called for action before more young people die. 

Invalid man's attacker jailed (Palmerston North): A solvent-sniffing homeless man who assaulted a man in a wheelchair and scuffled with firefighters has been sent to jail.

JAPAN

'High' herbs cause surge in hospitalizations: The number of people hospitalized after inhaling or consuming certain types of herbs for their stimulatory or hallucinatory effects has sharply risen in Tokyo this year, leading police to step up their inspections of shops selling these substances.

INDIA

Stationer held for selling whitener to minors (Hyderabad): A stationery store owner was taken into custody for selling whitener to minors who are getting addicted to inhaling the whitener for a ‘kick.'