Five Sharjah teenagers in hospital after butane-sniffing explosion
Abuse of the cigarette lighter fluid reported to have reached worrying levels
Five teenagers suffered burns after the cigarette lighter from which they were sniffing butane gas exploded.
The group were said to have been sitting in a car in Al Majaz, Sharjah, when the incident happened.
Emergency services received a report of a burnt car on Sunday evening and arrived at the scene to find the injured teenagers, Gulf News reported.
Butane becomes highly volatile when it changes from a liquid state to gas. Inhaling it can lead to a feeling of euphoria but can also cause hallucinations and sudden death.
Last year, The National reported that butane abuse had reached worrying levels among teenagers in the UAE.
In 2018, two boys aged 14 and 16 were badly burnt when the butane they were sniffing in Sharjah caught fire. A similar incident took place in 2017 when three Emiratis were severely burnt.
Government officials have been working hard to discourage young people from abusing butane, but its wide availability has made the issue difficult to address.
Misusing lighter fluid is against the law in the UAE. Sixty people were arrested for the offence between 2016 and 2018.
Updated: June 18, 2019 04:05 PM