Letters - October 11, 2012

A cocktail made using liquid nitrogen.

A cocktail made using liquid nitrogen.

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I WAS surprised when I heard of the student in Lancaster with serious stomach damage after drinking liquid nitrogen.

My first reaction was this was some sort of student prank that had gone seriously wrong, and where on earth had they obtained liquid nitrogen?

Then I learned that liquid nitrogen is quite widely used for “fun drinks”.

It was then that I became amazed!

Having spent a large part of my life in the chemical industry and seen the respect with which nitrogen is treated, to see bars serving it up with drinks beggars belief.

Nitrogen is not a “fun” substance, it is a serious and potentially lethal gas which if used properly and under controlled conditions is perfectly safe.

To mix it with cocktails and then drink it is foolhardy to say the least and as has been proven highly dangerous.

With the temperature of liquid nitrogen being below 200 degrees centigrade, if you splash it on unprotected skin you will get a serious freeze burn, if you splash it in your eye it will blind you.

If you release it in a confined space it will suffocate you before you realise there is a problem.

In a risk averse society like ours where councils chop trees down to stop conkers falling on the street, to let liquid nitrogen become available to the general public is as we have seen is foolhardy and an accident waiting to happen.

COUN GORDON McCANN,

Preesall.

LIKE many others I am appalled and also puzzled regarding the horrendous story of a young girl needing removal of her stomach as a direct consequence of drinking a cocktail.

There appears to be a call in the media for banning this type of cocktail preparation, but I was under the impression the legislation concerning the
 Control of Substances Hazardous to Health must already cover this.

The requirement to conduct a risk assessment when using any hazardous material must surely recognise the risk from ingestion.

Naturally our first thoughts must be for the poor girl, but surely the legislation is already in place to ensure any further practice of cryogenic drink preparation is banned and local authorities should be capable of ensuring within the licensing laws a monitoring of all nightspots to guard against this possible threat.

(NAME AND 
ADDRESS SUPPLIED)

MANY will share my concern over the problems at Cleveleys Bus Station (Gazette October 8).

It was fortuitous I was holding my joint bus surgery with Bus Users UK last Friday when it emerged Stagecoach were pulling out of using the new bus station.

Wyre Council deserves praise for reacting so speedily on a day when they faced a major civil defence issue in Poulton.

After a telephone call by me to Wyre, someone came promptly and met with the bus company managers already there for the bus surgery, and a solution is appreciably nearer as a result.

Just goes to show bus surgeries can achieve more than even organisers anticipate.

PAUL MAYNARD,

MP for Blackpool North and Cleveleys.