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Drug Alert: Vapes & Spice Posted or Updated on 22 Feb 2024

Vape pens containing a synthetic cannabinoid often known as Spice have led to people being taken to hospital in London recently.

In one incident, five people became seriously ill after vaping from a “Vaporesso” branded pen containing blue liquid in a silver and black cartridge. In a separate incident, people became ill after using a vape labelled “Lemonade Vape Cookies” (which may have been sold as THC).

Both vapes contained Spice, which can cause serious side effects like breathing problems, heart attacks and seizures. Other symptoms include feeling dizzy, vomiting, heart racing, sweating, anxiety and paranoid.

If you’re buying either illegal vapes or ones you think have Cannabis/ THC in them, follow our steps below to stay safe.

Staying safe and helping others

If possible, avoid using the vapes we have identified above – the only way to avoid all the risks is to not take drugs which are not prescribed for you. However, if you do choose to take them, remember:

  • Go low and slow - Be extra cautious about where you get your vapes from, and about the drugs you are taking. Start with a little bit, wait an hour and see how you feel.
  • Do not use alone; make sure that someone you trust is with you and knows what you’re doing in case you need help.
  • If doing it with others, it’s best if only one person vapes first instead of you all doing it at once.
  • Don't mix drugs: Using more than one drug increases your risks of overdose, including mixing with alcohol.
  • Look after your friends: look out for anyone who seems dizzy or confused, is sweating, trembling, vomiting or is very anxious, aggressive, or paranoid. If one of your mates is struggling to breathe or passes out, call 999.
  • Be prepared to call immediately for an ambulance if someone overdoses or become ill.
  • Test your drugs using the testing service available at

If you have any questions or are worried about anything, you can find your local service and their contact information on our website at

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