Photo: OXI, Deadly New Drug
A bi-product of cocaine, and is four times powerful, “oxi” is frighteningly cheap and more deadly than crack.
Public sanitation in Brazil does not know how to deal with this new drug. Crack is already 6 times stronger than cocaine, and cocaine is by itself a reason for concern, with more than 600,000 addicts in Brazil.
Oxi is so strong, that those who use it daily, “won’t last a year,” said Alvaro Ramos, president of the Reducción de Daños del Estado de Acre (NGO). According to Ramos, users will go “entire days without eating or sleeping, and end up in a deplorable state.”
The drug is a free mix of cocaine as a base, gas fuel or diesel, lye, acetone, potassium permanganate and battery acid. After 20 seconds of smoking, the user feels a euphoric rush, followed by the intense desire to do it again.
It is a drug that started in poor communities of Perú and Bolivia, but due to its popular and intense energizing effects, has seeped onto the middle class, where party goers and users who need to stay awake and alert for many hours try the substance and get hooked.
Everyday, there are more cases of once middle class students, and formerly-able workers, now wondering around at night, unable to speak, like vagrants, looking for a fix.
“You feel compelled to take it day and night, life or death don’t matter, just oxi,” said a 17-year-old user in recovery. “It absorbs your whole life.”