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Illicit liquor deaths in Mirigama 8 say Police

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A number of illicit liquor drinkers in Baduragama, Mirigama have fallen ill and at least 8 have died, the Police Media Spokesman’s office told RepublicNext.

Police media confirmed to RepublicNext that four died in Pallewela due to the liquor.

A spokesman for the Wathupitiwala hospital told RepublicNext that of the 15 that were rushed to the hospital after drinking the Moonshine, two were dead on arrival.

One other was confirmed dead in Mirigama from the allegedly tainted brew.

At the Kotadeniyawa hospital 3 deaths were confirmed to be from Methanol Poisoning.

People in many parts of the world consume Moonshine, particularly in places where alcohol is illegal or where legal alcohol is relatively expensive or hard to get.

Methyl Alcohol (Methanol) is the simplest form of alcohol. It is closely related to ethanol, the type of alcohol normally found in beer, wine and spirits – but highly toxic.

In the human body, methanol is converted to formaldehyde — the same substance in embalming fluid — and then to formic acid, which is highly toxic to cells.

Legally, Products are properly tested to make sure that methanol is separated from the end product and that the amount of alcohol by volume is clearly identified on the packaging and labels, However, for unregulated “Kasippu” production, there is no guideline or enforced safety checks.

Victims of Methanol poisoning usually suffer from kidney failure, problems with heart and circulation, liver damage, visual disturbances such as blurred vision, tunnel vision, changes in colour perception, and temporary or permanent blindness, nerve and brain damage or death.