Chemical methanol identified as possible cause of death of 21 youngsters in South African nightclub

Chemical methanol identified as possible cause of death of 21 youngsters in South African nightclub

The toxic chemical methanol was identified last month as a possible cause of death for 21 teenagers at a bar in the South African city of East London.

Methanol was found in all of the bodies and investigations continue to determine if the levels of the toxic chemical were sufficient to have killed them.

“Methanol was detected in all 21 individuals who were there, but there is still a progressive analysis of the quantitative levels of methanol and whether it could be the ultimate cause of death,” said Litha Matiwane, deputy provincial director for the Eastern Cape. to clinical service at a press conference today in East London.

Authorities are still awaiting final results, which are being conducted at a lab in Cape Town, he added.

Methanol is a toxic form of alcohol that is used industrially as a solvent, pesticide or alternative fuel. It is not used in the production of alcohol sold for human consumption.

It is not yet known how the young people ingest the methanol.

Alcohol poisoning and carbon monoxide inhalation were both ruled out as possible causes of death, although traces of both were found in the bodies of all 21 victims, Matiwane said.

The teens died at the Enyobeni club in East London’s Scenery Park neighborhood in the early hours of June 26, a case that shocked the country and resulted in several investigations by police and liquor licensing authorities.

Many of the teens were found dead in the nightclub, their bodies scattered on tables and sofas, while others died after being taken to nearby health facilities.

Police in South Africa will be guided by the final results of the toxicology analysis to determine whether anyone will face criminal charges for the 21 deaths, national police chief Bheki Cele said.

The nightclub owner and several employees were arrested and are currently in custody on charges of violating alcohol trafficking laws, including selling liquor to children.

Author: DN|Lusa

Source: El heraldo