New Marijuana Drug Has Some Worried - New York News

New Marijuana Drug Has Some Worried

Updated:
PHILADELPHIA -

The pot debate continues to rage on and is taking a dangerous turn. People are finding new ways to get an even more powerful high.

FOX 29's Dave Kinchen shows us a new pot craze hitting our streets that could have dangerous, even deadly, results.

It's a pipe dream come true for pot smokers, and the craze is invading our area. It's called Butane Hash Oil and it's extracted from traditional Cannabis. Users say that the stuff is so powerful that a "dab" will do ya and then some.

"If you go to any college area around here, Temple, Penn, wherever, you'll be able to find yourself some BHO."

Nick Vadala works for Philadelphia Magazine. He has written about hash oil and says that the trend is wildly popular out West in states where Marijuana is legal.

However, Philadelphia is catching on, even though the laws are strict. Thousands in Philly now crave hash oil's powerful punch.

"It's a very strong, concentrated form of marijuana[.] It's also just very concealable: you can hide it, you can use it in the street, and it's kind of unknown as it stands right now."

Butane hash oil or BHO is made from grinding up Marijuana into a tube and running butane gas through it. Users then take hits from the extractions, "dabs" as they call them.

There are scores of do-it-yourself demos plastered over the Internet on sites like YouTube. These videos show people how to make the various forms of BHO, from the hard, amber colored stuff called "Shatter," to the softer, smoother "Butter" or "Earwax."

Some users even smoke, or rather vaporize the drug, through e-cigarettes. The DEA says that one drop on a cigarette is equal to the effects of a single joint.

However, it's more than just an ultra-high for Mike Whiter of South Jersey.

"It' calmed me down, I wasn't on edge. I felt really good," he tells FOX 29.

Whiter served in Iraq with the Marines and says he came back with post-traumatic stress disorder. He was constantly reliving the nightmares seen in combat.

"Seen things I can't unsee," Whiter explains. "Walking down the street and one side looks like Iraq, the other side looks like Philadelphia."

He says that VA doctors put him on about 40 medications for over five years.

"Everything ranging from Lexapril, which is an antidepressant, to Klonopin which is anti-anxiety, Morphine, methadone, which is a pain medication but it's a super strong pain medicine and it's used mainly to help heroin addicts get off of heroin."

He found hash oil a year ago and hasn't looked back since. He even showed FOX 29 some of the tools to make it. He presented a glass tube, a torch and yes, marijuana itself. He actually made up a quick batch and took a dab.

"The first time I smoked, after being on all these pills, I was like, ‘you know what? This could be a miracle drug for me.' It saved my life. It literally saved my life."

Some like whiter find it therapeutic, but there are dangers too, and we're not just talking about the head-spinning high. This past summer, an Oregon man died after receiving burns over 90 percent of his body during a hash oil explosion.

And federal authorities say that these explosions are on the rise. Some may recall when FOX 29 reported on a video of a house that blew up after a home-made BHO attempt went wrong. The people tried using the same flammable chemical you'll find in an average lighter.

Some interpret the dangers differently.

"To me, it's an argument for legalization."

Chris Goldstein is a Philadelphia activist with the group Philly NORML, and he is pushing for the decriminalization of Marijuana. He says that the government could actually help curb the BHO risks.

"My concern is for consumers out there, and the best way to protect Cannabis consumers is to regulate the product and have it manufactured under regulations and available in stores."

The legal debate is currently going, state by state. While drug enforcement authorities continue to watch the flow of hash oil, many users like Mike Whiter stand by it.

"Now I have a life again. I have a purpose in life again…" he tells FOX 29.

  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • Dead cats found hanging from trees in Yonkers

    Dead cats found hanging from trees in Yonkers

    Thursday, April 24 2014 11:03 PM EDT2014-04-25 03:03:00 GMT
    SPCA of Westchester photoSPCA of Westchester photo
    Police are investigating the discovery of at least two dozen dead cats found inside plastic bags hanging from trees in Yonkers Thursday, according to the SPCA of Westchester. Some of the cats were badly decomposed but others appeared more recently killed.
    Police are investigating the discovery of at least two dozen dead cats found inside plastic bags hanging from trees in Yonkers Thursday, according to the SPCA of Westchester. Some of the cats were badly decomposed but others appeared more recently killed.
  • Some residents return after NJ brush fires force evacuations

    Some residents return after NJ brush fires force evacuations

    Thursday, April 24 2014 10:42 PM EDT2014-04-25 02:42:55 GMT
    A school and many homes in Ocean County, N.J., were evacuated on Thursday afternoon because of several brush fires that were fanned by winds. Some residents returned a few hours later. The largest fires burned about 300 acres around Berkeley Township. Firefighters had about 30 percent contained late Thursday night.
    A school and many homes in Ocean County, N.J., were evacuated on Thursday afternoon because of several brush fires that were fanned by winds. Some residents returned a few hours later. The largest fires burned about 300 acres around Berkeley Township. Firefighters had about 30 percent contained late Thursday night.
  • 'Here Lies Love'

    'Here Lies Love'

    Thursday, April 24 2014 7:33 PM EDT2014-04-24 23:33:22 GMT
    "Here Lies Love" tells the rise and fall of former Philippines first lady Imelda Marcos. History meets disco literally as the story is told in a nightclub.Ruthie Ann Miles plays Marcos. Miles admits a big challenge is bringing to life a woman with views vastly different from her own and giving that to show-goers. "As an actor you believe in yourself," Miles says. "You need to be your own best friend, your own biggest supporter so that the audience can come on a journey with you."
    "Here Lies Love" tells the rise and fall of former Philippines first lady Imelda Marcos. History meets disco literally as the story is told in a nightclub.Ruthie Ann Miles plays Marcos. Miles admits a big challenge is bringing to life a woman with views vastly different from her own and giving that to show-goers. "As an actor you believe in yourself," Miles says. "You need to be your own best friend, your own biggest supporter so that the audience can come on a journey with you."
Powered by WorldNow
Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices