Wisconsin-based SC Johnson, the maker of popular bug spray Raid, debunks claims that its pest-control products cause zombie-like effects when inhaled or ingested.
Emergency responders have reported cases of marijuana smokers who exhibited aggressive behaviors were found to use pot mixed with bug sprays. Since then, dozens of individuals show similar symptoms including zombie-like characteristics that last for about 45 minutes.
"Their movements are very slow, lethargic, a lot of drooling, kind of a loss of function overall," described Capt. Chris Major of Indianapolis Fire Department. "We find them with their clothes off, they've done that to themselves, they are eating the grass, pulling dirt off the ground, trying to put it in their mouth."
This controversy is damaging to SC Johnson, which has been in the business of manufacturing consumer chemical products since 1888. Its products include Baygon, Duck, Glade, Kiwi, Pledge, and Raid among many others.
Victim Of Inaccurate Reporting
Kelly Semrau, SVP of Global Corporate Affairs at SC Johnson, vehemently denied claims that the company's products have caused catatonic effects to people who inhaled or ingested it. She added that reports are completely inaccurate.
"Global authorities, including the WHO and the EPA for many decades, have studied these active ingredients and they have not reported ill effects like this," said Semrau.
Semrau emphasized that if, in any case, these products have exceeded the suggested amount, it still would not elicit the same symptoms as it has on bugs and other pests.
High concentrations of these chemicals can cause respiratory failure and brain damage. When used on bugs, pest sprays causes overstimulation in the brain that can lead to seizures and eventually death.
SC Johnson did not comment on the possible catatonic effects of bug sprays when mixed with marijuana or drugs like methamphetamine.
New Breed Of Drugs
Law enforcement agencies have reported that drug users have been lacing addictive substances with pyrethroids, an ingredient common in household chemicals. These new types of concoctions are called WASP, Hotshot, and KD or Katie.
People who inhale or ingest these drugs show aggressive behaviors reportedly like a mad dog.
"We send them off to the hospital to get checked out and within two hours they may be back out there on the street doing it again. We have had the same person multiple times in one day," Major said.
Daniel Rusyniak, medical director at Indiana Poison Center, said that what makes this issue complicated is that addicts do not draw the line between what is bad for their health and what would make them high.