An urgent warning has been issued about the potentially deadly effects of ‘legal, herbal or new highs’.
Ten people, including a 14-year old, have been admitted to hospital within two weeks, after buying the substances from shops across the county, including the Isle of Axholme.
Frances Cunning, Director of Public Health, said: “Today we are issuing a warning to residents and shopkeepers about the true effects of these substances. Whilst some of them may be legal to sell they are not intended for human consumption. Others may be packaged as legal but this may not actually be the case; most have not been tested or classified under the medicines act.
“The substances cause risky behaviours and can cause permanent damage to health or even death.”
He continued: “We are advising all parents to be vigilant for any behavioural changes and strongly advise anybody considering taking these substances to seriously reconsider.”
A helpline number has been set up that is open 24 hours a day, on 0808 143 0640.
Mr Cunning added” “Put in very simple terms we are concerned that we could be just one purchase away from a fatality or serious injury in North Lincolnshire.”
Police investigations are continuing and one arrest has been made.
The substances are becoming more common in shops and over the internet.
Many are being sold as legal but a legal high may just be unpoliced. High may not be high, it could be a powerful depressant or a strong hallucinogen.
Just because it is termed legal does not make it safe, health chiefs warn.
An event is being organised on October 30 to further warn the public of the dangers of these substances, at the Learning Development Centre on Enderby Road.
To attend, call Nichola Latham on 01724 244660.