Boris Johnson and hand sanitizer

People warned not to drink hand sanitiser ‘following spate of vandalism and theft’

"It’s mindless idiocy," warns business director

Hand sanitiser shouldn’t be drank, Brits have been warned after reports thieves have been drinking it.

It was claimed earlier this month that vandals in Nook, South Shields, were breaking into public coronavirus hand stations.

They had been put up in the north east town’s centre so shoppers could protect themselves.

But locals told press that those damaging the hand stations were also pouring the gel into milkshake cups.

Reports suggest hand sanitiser has been drunk in Nook, South Shields (Credit: Google Maps)

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Similar incidents were also said to have occurred in nearby Hebburn.

Brits warned against drinking hand sanitiser

Last week, a local councillor and chairman of the East Shields and Whitburn Community Area Forum said the risks of drinking the hand sanitiser could be severe.

We’ve had reports of people drinking the contents of them.

Alex Donaldson told Chronicle Live: “We’ve had reports of people drinking the contents of them.

“I can’t understand anyone drinking the contents of a thing like that and what harm they might be doing to themselves.”

Clean your hands with hand sanitiser. Do not drink it (Credit:

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‘It’s mindless idiocy’

And a director of, tasked with removing ‘thousands’ of damaged gel containers every week, has also issued a warning.

Mark Hall told the Independent: “It’s happening all over the place, pretty much everywhere.

“We take these away for councils and businesses, and we’re seeing so many damaged you wouldn’t believe.

“It’s mindless idiocy. This stuff is 80% proof with who knows what other chemicals inside. Do not drink it.”

Hand sanitiser
Chemicals that make up hand gel are not in any way fit for humans to drink (Credit:

Meanwhile, Metro reports the alcohol content would mean those consuming the substance would overdose before feeling drunk.

It also stresses other chemicals that make up hand gel are not in any way fit for humans to drink.

The site also claims consequences of consuming hand sanitiser can include brain damage, blindness, kidney damage, and liver damage.

CNN reported last month that three people died and one person was blinded recently after drinking hand sanitiser in the US.

Three others from New Mexico were also left critically ill with methanol poisoning.

Earlier today the Prime Minister Boris Johnson urged the public to ‘wash your hands, cover your face and make space’ to prevent virus spread.

He unveiled the slogan as he revealed the new face mask rules.

The PM also warned further coronavirus restrictions could be put in place.

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