The perils of drug addiction are well documented. Most of us are familiar with the sad lengths addicts often go to in order to get their next fix. When we think of drug addiction, we often think of someone hooked on notorious hard drugs like heroin, crack, meth, or oxycodone.
British addict Brian Taylor is hooked on none of these things. Instead, he has spent his years chasing fume-induced highs from gasoline. His addiction is so severe that Taylor has been sent to prison due to his inability to stay away from fuel pumps.
On December 30th, Taylor was caught twice trying to steal gasoline from local stations. He is famous with local law enforcement for slashing gas pump hoses and getting high by huffing fumes from the toxic liquid. His habit was so prevalent in the past that he was ordered to stay away from all gasoline stations. When his addiction came calling on the day before New Years Eve, Taylor wasn’t strong enough to resist.
After being seen stealing gas, he was arrested and sentenced to 16 months in prison. He must also pay a roughly $180 fine to cover damages he caused to gas station equipment. Prosecuting attorney Guy Prest says Taylor is well-known for “attacking petrol pumps, obtaining petrol, and consuming it.”
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Taylor has tried to get help for his addiction in the past. He attended drug addiction help meetings in past years, but -- get this -- he was turned away because he wreaked so strongly of gas that he was deemed a fire hazard.
Taylor is not alone in his addiction. According to Addiction Treatment Magazine, inhalant abuse is on the rise. The cheap high offered by gas huffing is no gimmick either. An analysis by BMC Physiology found that “gasoline exposure significantly alters normal chemical levels in several different brain areas, including the cerebral cortex, which acts as the center for higher-level consciousness; the cerebellum, which helps control and coordinate body movements; the hippocampus, which acts as the major center for memory storage and organization; and the hypothalamus, which helps control a variety of involuntary nerve function."