CAMBODIA LIQUOR POISONING: AT LEAST SIX DIED AND 32 HOSPITALISED
By Susan Lewis
Credit: Daniel Bernard/Unsplash
At least six local people had died and 32 others hospitalised after drinking tainted herbal rice liquor in northwestern Cambodia's Banteay Meanchey province.
According to Banteay Meanchey provincial health authority, the suspected toxic liquor was sold under an unregistered label named "Taing Kuoy" at very cheap price of 1,000 riels (USD0.25) for a 500 ml plastic bottle.
The victims, who are mostly working class people in the construction and porters industry, showed symptoms such as dizziness, eye irritation, fatigue, stomachache and nausea.
The outbreak started on last Friday and soon claimed six lives while 32 were hospitalised after consuming the tainted liquor.
The country’s consumer protection authority said in in a report released on Friday that test results for the suspected liquor show a methanol level of higher than 0.35 percent, which can be fatal if consumed in large amount.
The report also said that the authorities have confiscated 13,898 bottles, equivalent to 6,994.5 litres, of the Taing Kuoy-labelled liquor from retailers and are tracking the producers.
Rice liquor is popular in rural areas in Cambodia due to its cheap price, news of liquor poisoning outbreak is not uncommon in the country.
In May 2018, methanol-laced rice liquor and contaminated water left 13 people dead and nearly 300 others hospitalised in eastern Kratie province.
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