Pepper sprays have been in use for a long time mainly by the law enforcement unit to control riots and illegal demonstrations. It is mainly made of an inflammatory substance that irritates the eyes and causes pain, tears and temporary blindness when sprayed. In Brooklyn, New York, the sale of pepper sprays to civilians is restricted only to two brands which are for dog and bear protection. Brooklyn legal pepper spray can be found only at specific outlets allowed by the US government since its potency can be used for wrong reasons including assault and robbery. They are mainly made using extracts from capsicum ingredients which include chilies and the concentration differs from manufacturer to the other. The government however requires that certain limits are met to ensure effective protection from bears and dogs.
Types of legal pepper sprays
The three major types of pepper sprays available namely CS, CN and OC which is the one allowed for sale to residents in Brooklyn. OC (oleoresin capsicum) is considered the latest and most effective since it acts as an inflammatory agent as opposed to CN and CS which are irritants. Irritants generally take between 5 and 30 seconds to become effective which is a very long time within which attackers can still cause harm. It is also proven that offenders under drug influence will feel minimal effects and can still attack even after the spray has been used on them. OC however induces immediate stinging effects accompanied by breathing difficulties and uncontrollable coughs. The pepper sprays are usually made using different combinations that include the following:
- Pepper foam – refers to a thick form, mixed with about 10% pepper, which causes temporary blindness. When wiped off, the pepper gets ground into the eyes thereby inducing inflammation.
- Pepper gel – this is a much thicker formula that coats the face when sprayed. It contains a concentration of capsaicinoid and is considered more effective than regular pepper sprays.
- UV marking dye – this is mainly used for identification as it marks the attacker/assailant with an ultraviolet dye.
- CN tear gas – this component causes a burning sensation which leads to profuse tearing and disorientation.
The different types of pepper sprays utilize three different spray techniques namely stream, forced cone and fogger. Stream sprays the pepper like water pistols in a straight line and requires accurate aiming on the target thus less reliable. They however have a longer range than the rest. Forced cone sprays are much better than stream/broken stream sprays since they cover a much larger area of about two feet which is the approximate of human head. It can be used to spray a target between 6 and 12 feet away. Foggers spray over a much wider area and are the most efficient for use in multiple attacker situations like bears and crowds. They contain much finer droplets and can make an entire hallway uninhabitable. Foggers are however suitable for close targets since the content spray over a much shorter range.
Advantages pepper sprays
Pepper sprays are used as protection in self defense or crowd management. The self defense sprays are made to meet specific needs for joggers, climbers, hikers, bikers, campers among other outdoor activity enthusiasts. They are used to prevent attacks from wild dogs and bears by spraying the content into the face of the attacker. It can also be used on robbers and sex offenders to disorient them and buy enough time to make emergency reports. OC pepper sprays are derived from natural constituents and have no prolonged effects or any associated impairments. It fades off in about 40 minutes with minor effects that can last for a few hours. Many online stores contain a list of legal pepper sprays which they will deliver to clients although shipping by air is not possible.
Pepper sprays can be of different formulations, concentrations, liquid/foam capacities, spray patterns and nozzle types. The US government requires manufacturers to ensure a minimum of 1% concentration. Mace is the most renowned manufacturer that produces a range of dog, bear and canine repellants approved by the EPA. The Brooklyn legal pepper sprays include Mace Muzzle and the Guard Alaska Bear Spray. They have a four year shelf life after which they expire and any remain should be disposed as required by Brooklyn’s environmental regulations. They should be kept in a cool dry place away from heat, flames and strong lights to prevent the cartridges from leaking and spoiling. Pepper sprays are efficient self defense utilities that should be carried along in foreign environments and adventure expeditions.