Blog Report

Monday, January 25, 2010

Teen Driver Huffs and Crashes Car into House

From in Indiana:

Last week a 17 year-old male driver lost control of his car after huffing while driving. The car crossed the center line, left the road and crashed into the back of a house.

Police report that he “ran from the crash site but later returned” and that he “appeared to be hurt but refused treatment.” He was charged with “leaving the scene of an accident, and operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of drugs”

Homeless Woman Arrested for Huffing in CA

From the Daily Nexus in Santa Barbara:

On Saturday morning, a homeless woman was arrested for huffing spray paint fumes in a parking lot. She was “cited for public intoxication.”

Friday, January 22, 2010

Mom Huffs Hairspray in Car in Front of Children

From in Texas:

On January 7th, a 25 year-old woman was caught allegedly huffing hair spray through a towel with her two children, both younger than 2, inside her vehicle.

Police found a “dozen cans of aerosol hair spray” inside the car and she was indicted on “two counts of endangering a child.”

Australia Changes Huffing Related Laws


The Northern Territory Government recently approved changes to the Volatile Substance Abuse Prevention Act. The changes to the law “increase the amount of time a user can be kept in treatment from two to four months.” Additionally, the change “also reduces the amount of time it takes to get treatment orders.”

Previously, the minister had to determine whether treatment was necessary but now, the Chief Medical Officer can help speed up the response time and start treatment.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Inhalant Abuse & Runaways

Interesting research study via BMC Public Health:

“Running away experience and psychoactive substance use among adolescents in Taiwan: multi-city street outreach survey”- Published: 20 January 2010

A few of the study's findings follows below:

  • The lifetime risk of inhalant use increased steadily from adolescents who had experienced a trial runaway episode (one time lasting ≤ 1 day), to those with extended runaway experience (≥ 2 times or lasting > 1 day), when compared to those who had never ran away.
  • Adolescents who had their first running away experience > 6 months previously had a greater risk of inhalant use over the past 6-months than those with a similar experience within the last 6 months.
  • Both alcohol and tobacco use were most frequently initiated before the first running away,
    whereas inhalant use was most frequently initiated after this event
  • When adolescents who were fleeing an unsatisfactory home life were compared to
    those who ran away for excitement, the former tended to have a higher risk of inhalant use.

Psychology Today: Inhalant Abuse

Excellent piece on Inhalants posted yesterday to the Psychology Today site: “Early drug use problems: Kids, inhalants, and huffing”

The author notes: "Inhalants are often the first drugs that children try. Do you know enough?"

Click here to read the blog posting.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Huffing Driver Crushes Man Up Against Market Wall

From the Dothan Eagle in Alabama:

In 2007, Larry Downing, a 60 year old man was struck and killed by a car in a grocery store parking lot. His family filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the market, the city, and the 27 year-old female driver who hit him.

The driver was allegedly under the influence of an inhalant when she hit him,“crushing him up against the wall of the market.” She pled guilty and was sentenced to serve 25 years in prison.

The suit contends that the police should have arrested the driver earlier that evening after a minor traffic incident. Instead, she was released and ended up killing Mr. Downing a short while later. The suit was scheduled for trial next week but a continuance was granted. It has now been rescheduled for April 5th.

New Federal Inhalant Data: SAMHSA & DAWN

SAMHSA’s Office of Applied Studies just announced the release of the 2008 National Estimates of Drug-related Emergency Department Visits from the Drug Abuse Warning Network.

We went through all the tabs to pull out any relevant inhalant information. Our findings follow below:

Ozzy Osbourne Huffed Degreasers?

An interesting note in this article from the San Antonio Current:

From his book "I am Ozzy", Ozzy Osbourne "got fired from a factory job for huffing a degreasing chemical."

Car Goes Airborne After Driver Huffs

From the Dekalb Daily Chronicle in Illinois

Last Monday, three teens were injured in a huffing related car accident.
Around noon, the 17 year-old male driver, a 17-year old male passenger, and another 16 year old male passenger were allegedly huffing computer duster while traveling in the car. The driver passed out and the car “crossed the lanes of traffic and began driving in a ditch on the south side of Route 34.” The car then became airborne, struck a traffic signal control box, landed on the street and then came to a stop on the other side of the roadway.”

Thankfully, no one was seriously injured. All three suffered minor injuries and were treated at the hospital and released.

The driver was “ charged with driving under the influence of an intoxicating substance, driving under the influence of marijuana, improper lane use, failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident, operating an uninsured motor vehicle and two counts of reckless conduct.”

Inhalant Abuse in Mayoral Candidate's Past

From the Carlsbad Current Argus in New Mexico:

The article about a write-in mayoral candidate in Carlsbad mentions his alleged previous history of inhalant abuse. Ten years ago, he was charged with “abuse or possession of glue or aerosol as an inhalant.” He pleaded no contest and was found guilty.

However, he claims that “he was sleeping in the park while his cousins were huffing paint and police arrested him because he was the oldest.”

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Woman Drives Car Into Ditch After Huffing

From WHNT in Alabama:

A 29 year old woman has been “charged with DUI, possession of inhalants, driving on a revoked license and failure to maintain control of a motor vehicle” after driving her car into a ditch.

When passing motorists tried to help the woman she tried to hide something under the seat of her car. Police found a half-empty can of computer duster there and at the hospital she admitting to huffing from the can before passing out.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Wal-Mart Employee Stealing Cans of Whipped Cream to Huff

From the and the Express-Star in Oklahoma:

On Monday, a Wal-Mart employee was arrested for “stealing cans of whipped cream to get high” and he was charged with “one count of misdemeanor embezzlement.”

The employee admitted to police that over the past two months he has stolen 10 cans of whipped cream and huffed from them while at work. After the cans were empty he would place them “in "backstock" so they would be marked defective.” The article notes that each can cost $3.53 so the man has stolen at least $35 since November.

Police Officer Arrested for Huffing

From KVUE News in Texas:

On Monday, an Austin police officer was taken into police custody, placed on restrictive duty, and charged with “inhaling either glue or paint.”

Frighteningly, the article notes that he was “arrested just weeks earlier in Kyle for the same offense.”

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Older Brother Endangers Sibling While Huffing At Hockey Game

From in Pennsylvania:

An 18 year-old male was charged with “endangering the welfare of children and illegal use of solvents” after passing out at a Hershey Bears game earlier this month. The teen was chaperoning his 10 year-old brother when he “huffed a solvent and passed out at the game.”

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Monitoring the Future 2008: Charts II


Page 127:

  • "With regard to inhalants, the large separation of trend lines for the younger age groups in
    Figure 5-4 shows that, across many cohorts, use has dropped consistently and sharply with age, particularly in the first few years after high school.

  • In fact, of all the populations covered by MTF, the 8th graders (not shown in Figure 5-4) have had the highest rate of use, indicating that the decline in use with age starts at least as early as 8th or 9th grade.

  • Like cocaine, inhalants have shown a strong age effect, but unlike cocaine, use of inhalants declines with age."

Page 136:

  • "Inhalant use has generally been quite a bit higher among males than females in all three
    age groups.

  • The 19- to 22-year-old group showed a gradual upward shift from 1980 to
    1988, followed by a leveling for some years for both genders.

  • In 1997, female inhalant use began to decline among 19- to 22-year-olds, followed by males in 2001; however, the gender gap did not diminish much with this decline until 2005, when there was a convergence.

  • Among 23- to 26-year-olds there was a widening gender gap as use by males increased between 1992 and 1999, though a decline among males since then has narrowed the gap, and since 2005 the gap has been very small.

  • In the oldest age stratum, use among males has consistently been slightly higher, though the prevalence of inhalant use is very low by this age.

Page 139:

  • From 1987 (when data were first available) through 1994, rates of inhalant use remained
    relatively stable, quite low, and about equal in all four regions among 19- to 28-year-olds.

  • Annual use then rose in the Northeast in 1995 and 1996 and remained higher than in the
    other regions through 2000, when it dropped back to rates comparable to the other three

  • Except for that divergence, the regions have moved very much in parallel for this
    class of drugs.

  • Annual prevalence in 2008 is at low levels in this age group, between 0.9% and 1.7%.

Page 146:

  • The absolute levels of inhalant use have remained low in these age groups, particularly
    above age 22.

  • However, during the mid- to late 1980s, there was a gradual increase in use
    among 19- to 22-year-olds in all community-size strata.

  • No strong or consistent association with population density has appeared, though the very large cities have generally tended to have higher rates than the other areas among 19- to 22-year-olds, particularly in the period 1998 through 2000.

  • Among 19- to 22-year-olds, there has been some falloff in use since the late 1990s in all population-density strata.

Page 148 - TABLE 5-1: Trends in Lifetime Prevalence of Various Types of Drugs among Respondents of Modal Ages 19–28

  • 0.3 % increase from 2007 - 2008
  • highest rate =1995
Page 153 - TABLE 5-3: Trends in 30-Day Prevalence of Various Types of Drugs
  • 0.3% increase from 2007-2008
  • Highest year =1999

Page 220: TABLE 7-2: Trends in Friends’ Use of Drugs as Estimated by
Respondents in Modal Age Groups of 18, 19–22, 23–26, 27–30, 35, 40, 45, and 50

Page 252: TABLE 8-1 Lifetime Prevalence of Use for Various Types of Drugs, 2008:
Full-Time College Students vs. Others among Respondents 1 to 4 Years beyond High School

  • Full Time College=4.9%
  • Others=9.5%


  • Full Time College=5.4%
  • Others=9.7%


  • Full Time College =4.7%
  • Others =9.3%

Page 253: TABLE 8-2 Annual Prevalence of Use for Various Types of Drugs, 2008:
Full-Time College Students vs. Others among Respondents 1 to 4 Years beyond High School

  • Full Time College=1.1%
  • Others=2.5%
  • Full Time College=1.5%
  • Others=2.3%


  • Full Time College=0.9%
  • Others =2.7%

Page 254: TABLE 8-3 : Thirty-Day Prevalence of Use for Various Types of Drugs, 2008:
Full-Time College Students vs. Others among Respondents 1 to 4 Years beyond High School


  • Full time college=.4%
  • Others=.6%


  • Full time college=.5%
  • Others =.8%


  • Full time college=.3%
  • others =.4%
Page 260:
  • Use of inhalants has been very low among college and noncollege respondents since
    1980, when rates were first measured (Figure 9-4).

  • Twelfth graders have consistently had higher rates of inhalant use than either of these segments of the young adult population.

  • All three groups have trended in parallel, though, with an increase in use from around
    1981 through 1995, followed by a long decline thereafter.

  • The increase and decline were more pronounced among 12th graders.

Page 268: TABLE 9-1Trends in Lifetime Prevalence of Various Types of Drugs
among College Students 1 to 4 Years beyond High School

  • 1.4% DECREASE from 2007-2008
  • Highest =1989

Page 270: TABLE 9-2 Trends in Annual Prevalence of Various Types of Drugs
among College Students 1 to 4 Years beyond High School

  • 1.4% DECREASE from 2007 -2008
  • Highest =1988 +1997

Page 271: TABLE 9-3 Trends in 30-Day Prevalence of Various Types of Drugs
among College Students 1 to 4 Years beyond High School

  • .2% INCREASE from 2007-2008
  • Highest =1980 +1999

Page 278: FIGURE 9-4 Inhalants Trends in Annual Prevelance Among College Students vs Others 1 to 4 Years Beyond High School:

Monitoring the Future : Charts- Part I

Interesting Findings within the Survey's charts:

Page 43: TABLE 2-2: Trends in Annual Prevalence of Use of Various Drugs for 8th, 10th, and 12th Graders, College Students, and Young Adults (Ages 19–28)

  • 2007-2008 Change: Increases in 8th, 12th, and Young Adult categories

Page 49: TABLE 2-3: Trends in 30-Day Prevalence of Use of Various Drugs for 8th, 10th,
and 12th Graders, College Students, and Young Adults (Ages 19–28)

  • 2007-2008 Change: Increases in 8th, 12th, College, and Young Adult categories

Page 88: TABLE 4-1: Prevalence of Use of Various Types of Drugs by Gender among Respondents of Modal Ages 19–30, 2008

  • Annual: Males=1.9%, Females=.8%, Total=1.3%

  • 30-Day: Males= .8%, Females=.2%, Total=.4%

Page 91: TABLE 4-2: Lifetime Prevalence of Use of Various Types of Drugs by Subgroups among Respondents of Modal Ages 19–30, 2008

  • Total=10.3%
  • Male=12.1%
  • Female=9.1%
  • 19-20 yrs+21-22 yrs=6.6%
  • 23-24=12%
  • 25-26=11.1%
  • 27-28=11.4%
  • 29-30=14.5%
  • northest=10.5%
  • Midwest=10.2%
  • South=10.1%
  • West=10.3%
  • Farm/country=10.9%
  • Small town=9.9%
  • Medium City=10.7%
  • Large City=9.6%
  • Very Large City=10.9%

Page 94: TABLE 4-3: Annual Prevalence of Use of Various Types of Drugs by Subgroups among Respondents of Modal Ages 19–30, 2008

  • Total=1.3%
  • Male=1.9%
  • Female=.8%
  • 19-20 yrs=1.8%
  • 21-22 yrs=1.5%
  • 23-24=1.7%
  • 25-26=1.1%
  • 27-28=.9%
  • 29-30=.7%
  • northest=1.8%
  • Midwest=.9%
  • South=1.3%
  • West=1.2%
  • Farm/country=1.7%
  • Small town=1.3%
  • Medium City=1.1%
  • Large City=.7%
  • Very Large City=1.9%
TABLE 4-4: Thirty-Day Prevalence of Use of Various Types of Drugs by Subgroups among Respondents of Modal Ages 19–30, 2008

  • Total=.4%
  • Male=.8%
  • Female=.2%
  • 19-20 yrs=.6%
  • 21-22 yrs=.3%
  • 23-24=.8%
  • 25-26=.3%
  • 27-28=.2%
  • 29-30=.2%
  • northest=.4%
  • Midwest=.3%
  • South=.4%
  • West=.3%
  • Farm/country=.9%
  • Small town=.3%
  • Medium City=.3%
  • Large City=.3%
  • Very Large City=.4%
Page 113: FIGURE 4-13 : Inhalants:a Lifetime, Annual, and 30-Day Prevalence
among Respondents of Modal Ages 18 through 30 by Age Group, 2008


Some interesting findings:

Page 17:

  • Among 12th graders there was a long-term gradual increase in the use of inhalants
    (unadjusted for nitrite inhalants) from 1976 to 1987, followed by a leveling for a few
    years and then a further increase in the 1990s.
  • In the early 1990s, there was a troublesome increase in inhalant use among secondary school students generally, followed by a reversal after 1995.
  • After reaching a low point in 2002 or 2003 in grades 8, 10, and 12, use of inhalants increased some in all grades, but then declined in all grades more recently, at least through 2007.
  • Perceived risk among 8th and 10th graders was declining fairly steadily after 2001, quite possibly as a result of generational forgetting of the dangers of these drugs; this decline halted among the 8th graders , but then resumed in 2008. A new anti-inhalant campaign might well be effective in offsetting this decline in perceived risk in recent years, much as a similar campaign did in the mid-1990s.
  • One class of inhalants, amyl and butyl nitrites, became somewhat popular in the late
    1970s, but their use has been almost eliminated.

Page 23:

  • In 8th grade, inhalants rank second only to marijuana among the illicitly used drugs in
    terms of annual prevalence, and they actually rank first in lifetime use.
  • In 2008 the proportion of 8th graders reporting any illicit drug use in their lifetime, exclusive of inhalants, was 20%, whereas including inhalants raised the figure to 28%.

Page 26:

  • The 8th- and 10th-grade samples --The use of inhalants is slightly higher
    among females.

Page 69

  • One 8th grader in six (16%) reported using inhalants
  • 1 in 24 (4.1%) reported inhalant use in just the past month.
  • This is the only class of drugs for which use is
    substantially higher in 8th grade than in 10th or 12th grade.
  • The very large number of 8th graders who have already begun using the so-called
    “gateway drugs” (tobacco, alcohol, inhalants, and marijuana) suggests that a substantial
    number are also at risk of proceeding further to such drugs as LSD, cocaine,
    amphetamines, and heroin.

Monitoring the Future Press Release - New Inhalant Concerns

From the University of Michigan's "Monitoring the Future'" December 14th press release :

Two interesting points:

  • "While use of ecstasy, inhalants, and LSD is not rising currently, the investigators remain concerned because the perceived risk associated with those drugs has been in decline for several years and may leave young people open to renewed interest in those drugs.
  • Likewise, 8th and 10th graders, who are most likely to use inhalants, have been showing a steady decline since 2001 in the belief that experimenting with these substances is dangerous. “This leaves them more vulnerable to any new stimulus toward trying inhalants"

Under the Influence in Idaho

From the Twin Falls Times-News in Idaho:

Yesterday in the 5th District Court, a 49 year old man was arraigned for “under the influence of inhalants.” He entered a no guilty plea, was appointed a public defender and was released on his own recognizance.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Man Arrested for Huffing - 4th time in three weeks!


On Thursday, a 27 year old man was arrested for a huffing related incident - his FOURTH time since December 20th.

Police noticed the man “huffing cans of dust remover stolen from the local Office Max store” while walking down the street in the early afternoon. He was charged with” illegally inhaling a solvent, retail theft and public drunkenness” and is being held in prison in lieu of $100,000 bail.

He was arrested for similar cases on December 20th and December 30th and our blog picked up the story early this month and posted here.

Huffing Driver Crashes Twice in Two Days!

From the Ada Evening News in Oklahoma:

Last week, a 31-year old woman crashed her car and was arrested twice in two consecutive days.

On Thursday, she was reportedly huffing from a can of computer duster while in her car waiting for a passing train. She then soon crashed head-on into an SUV with a family of five inside and drove away. The police officer reported “she appeared to be dazed. She had a far away stare in her eyes and there was a lot of damage on the front of the vehicle.”

She was taken to the police station where she admitted using inhalants and was charged with “suspicion of driving under the influence of intoxicants, leaving the scene of an accident, failure to render aid and driving left of center.” One of the children in the SUV was taken to the hospital for evaluation.

The article notes the driver had “reportedly just left court after entering a plea” for a similarly related accident the day before. On Wednesday, a Sheriff’s Department employee noticed a car driving erratically and called in the concern. When the authorities attempted to pull her over, the driver refused to stop. She passed the sobriety test but police note that since a “huffing high” is so short lived, she had probably already sobered up. A can of computer duster was found in the car and the driver was charged with “suspicion of failure to maintain traffic lane, eluding a peace officer and violation of the Oklahoma Inhalation Act.”

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Inhalant Abuse in Canada

From the Daily Gleaner in Canada:

The article contains an interesting statistic on inhalant use in Canada: “The 2004, Canadian Addiction Survey revealed that 1.3 per cent of Canadians 15 and older reported having used inhalants at least once in their life - a figure that translates into more than 300,000 people.”

In addition, interesting points from Cpl. Jean Guy Bourque of RCMP J Division's synthetic drug operations division. He notes:

  • “youth are more likely to use inhalants because they're not old enough to buy liquor or cigarettes.”
  • "Even though reports of such incidents aren't widespread in this province, parents should be aware that it could happen and remain alert, said the drug expert. "
  • "If they start seeing that these things are happening and they're finding stuff like that in their children's bedrooms, it's going to be a telltale sign and they should have a red flag"

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Car Crashes Through Backyards, Fences in California

From the San Diego Union Tribune in California:

This past Tuesday, a car crashed through two Chula Vista backyards before coming to a stop in the third. It had gone “through two chain-link fences and sideswiped a parked sport-utility vehicle.” Thankfully, no one was injured in the accident.

The 20 year-old driver was found in his car with an aerosol can in his lap. He was “arrested on suspicion of driving while under the influence.”

Huffing Driver Nearly Crashes Into Cop

From Allentown Morning Call:

Earlier this week, a 28 year-old man nearly hit a police car while huffing from a can of computer duster. The officer swerved to avoid the car and as the car passed, the officer noticed the man was holding the can to his face.

The driver admitted to stealing three cans of computer duster from Wal-Mart and huffing from them while driving. He was charged with “careless driving, failure to stay in his lane, driving under suspension and retail theft.” He was arraigned and released on $10,000 bail.

California Teen Dead After Inhaling Helium

From the Press-Enterprise in California:

On December 14, 2009 17 year-old Micah David died in his own home after huffing helium to get high. Micah was a straight A student who was active in both his school and church communities. He would have turned 18 this month.

His father said Micah purchased a small tank of helium at Wal-Mart and on the evening of the 14th, after his family had gone to bed, he “attached a bag to the tank to place over his head and closed it off to keep the helium from getting out.” His family found him the next morning with the bag still over his head.

The police noted one previous helium death in the past year and a half- the victim was a female. Officials warn that “the tests may not detect helium in a body but the autopsy tests typically would uncover any signs of anoxia, the technical term for oxygen starvation.”

Sunday, January 3, 2010

New York Man Arrested Again for Huffing Gold Paint

From ABC50 in New York:

On New Year’s Eve, sheriffs’ deputies were called for reports of someone telling behind a Dollar General Store. They followed footprints in the snow and found a 38 year-old man with gold paint on his face, hands and clothing.

The man was “arrested for disorderly conduct and inhalation of toxic vapors.”It wasn't the first time he had been caught huffing. Above, is hismug shot from a 2004 arrest.

Another Case of Huffing in a Parking Lot

From the Daily Record in New Jersey:

Last Wednesday, a 32 year-old woman and a 48 year-old man were found in a running vehicle in a Bank of America parking lot. Police noticed they had been huffing from two cans.

They individuals were charged with “inhaling toxic chemical fumes and possession of drug paraphernalia.” The driver was also charged with driving while intoxicated.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Man Steals and then Huffs Products in Pennsylvania

From the Carlisle Sentinel in Pennsylvania:

Earlier this week, a 27 year-old male was charged with “retail theft, huffing, and public drunkenness” after stealing three cans of computer duster from Staples and then huffing from the cans in front of the store.