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Leeds Nightclub Fined After Selling Industrial Alcohol As Vodka

Experts Call For Lessons To Be Learned Over Worrying Incident


By Rob Dixon

Gatecrasher Clubs and Bars Ltd has been fined £5,000 and ordered to pay costs after it was discovered to be selling industrial alcohol as vodka at an event held at 'The Bed' nightclub in Leeds during the student fresher’s week in the city last year.

West Yorkshire Trading Standards Service visited the site after a complaint that the premises was serving counterfeit vodka, where officers found more than 600 litres of spirit which had just been removed from sale following concerns from customers.

Following tests, it was revealed the drink contained isopropanol, tertiary butanol and chloroform and all of the bottles were seized. Investigations found the drink was obtained through a broker in a cash deal and a case against the supplier has been adjourned until September.

Irwin Mitchell’s legal experts represent both victims and families whose loved ones have fallen ill as a result of exposure to chemicals, including those hurt after consuming harmful substances in drinks.

Sally Rissbrook, a solicitor at Irwin Mitchell’s Sheffield office with expertise in relation to such issues, said: “This was clearly a very serious incident and it is incredibly fortunate that people did not suffer health problems as a result of consuming the drink.

“The safety of consumers should always come first and a key part of this is to ensure that proper tests are carried out on products before they are placed on sale, while care should be taken with any items that may raise suspicion in their appearance.

“Lessons clearly need to be learned from this and we would encourage nightclub operators and owners to ensure they always ensure that the items they are selling are safe for consumption.”

Read more about Irwin Mitchell's expertise in relation to Environmental and Health Pollutant Claims