Trade body urges festival organisers to take action on gas abuse
As the 2018 festival season gets underway, the British Compressed Gases Association (BCGA) is appealing to event organisers to take a robust stance against gas abuse.
The national trade body is calling on festival organisers to prevent Nitrous Oxide getting onto their sites and help block its dangerous use.
Supplying the gas for inhalation (without appropriate medical licence and qualified supervision) is now an offence under the Psychoactive Substances Act 2016, and the BCGA is keen to see offences punished by the courts.
Doug Thornton, Chief Executive of the BCGA, said: “The recreational use of Nitrous Oxide has always been dangerous and has caused many deaths. The relatively new law has already had good effect in curbing the activities of those who would profit from the misery which substance abuse causes and we hope the message starts to get through that inhaling Nitrous Oxide is anything but harmless fun.
“The law now needs to be enforced vigorously and festival organisers provide robust actions to ban supplies of the gas getting into their events, particularly in the small 8g mini-canister ‘bullets’, which are so easy to buy and to hide in pockets and bags. Organisers should also consider their own Public Liability risk and insurance in this.’’
According to the BCGA, the misuse of Nitrous Oxide – which is often referred to as ‘Laughing Gas’ can lead to serious health issues and even death.
Mr Thornton added: “It can put users at all manner of risks with their judgement, thinking and motor functions impaired. Repeated use can also interfere with complex biochemistry in the body to do irreversible damage to the brain, central nervous system and liver.
The most obvious risk is immediate death by simple asphyxiation if users inhale too much. But, before the ‘’hypoxic’’ (partial starvation of Oxygen to the brain) condition which induces the intended euphoric feeling, it can also cause heart arrest. Many deaths have occurred this way.
“We don’t like the name ‘Laughing Gas’ as suggests it is fun to inhale and trivialises the risks, but it is absolutely not safe to inhale and there have been too many deaths resultant from its abuse.”
Steve Heap: 13th Jun 2018 21:02:00
This month, you can read about the new partnership we’ve sealed with HMRC to tackle incidents of tax fraud in the private security industry. In other SIA news, we have written a blog reflecting on our Manchester open day.
31st July 2018
The En Indy Awards
The story of David and Goliath is well known but the reality is that Goliath normally wins and this is reflected in many industry awards programmes. EN introduced The Indy Award recently to cater for exactly this – to allow smaller, independent organisers to compete with their peers rather than the global behemoths we know and love.
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The Festival and Outdoor Events Show (Festout) returns with a focus on key industry training September 26th/27th, Sandown Park, Esher, Surrey
17th July 2018
30 Under Thirty
The EN 30/30 returns for its 4th outing, to recognise excellence in the next generation of exhibition professionals.
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