‘Booze that can blind’ warning

DRINKERS are being urged to watch out for toxic alcohol that can cause blindness and even death,

Cheap wine, vodka and other drinks have been found in other parts of West Yorkshire containing harmful chemicals along with the alcohol.

West Yorkshire Trading standards principal officer Trevor Gray said businesses buying their vodka from legitimate sources such as the local cash and carry should be getting the genuine product. But he warned: “Anyone buying from a white van man is asking for trouble.”

The different chemicals found include methanol which, according to the Health Protection Agency, is dangerous, even if drunk in small amounts.

It can cause serious health effects including coma, convulsions, blindness and even death. Mr Gray said there were some tell-tale signs drinkers could look out for.

He said the smell of toxic alcohol could often give it away, sometimes having the same smell as nail-varnish remover.

Labels and packaging can also be not quite right when examined.

He urged people not to buy any alcohol from a non-reputable source.

“If you meet someone in a pub and they are offering cheap bottles of spirits, don’t buy them,” he said.

“The reason they are cheap is that they’re not genuine.”

Anyone with concerns about fake alcohol can call West Yorkshire Trading Standards on 08454 040506.