Talk:Pepper spray

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Pepper spray IS non-lethal. The deaths allegedly related to its use are not a result of exposure to pepper spray itself, rather they are a result of some other form of force. For example, individuals exposed to the agent have asphyxiated after being subdued due to police officers not utilizing proper arrest procedures (e.g., a police officer places his knee and body weight on a suspects neck or back for a substantial period of time, thus preventing the suspect from breathing.) The chance that an individual will actually experience an allergic reaction to the chemical spray is substantially small as well.

For future reference, the ACLU is a joke and is hardly a credible source for anything.

ACLU statistics[edit]

I don't see why you would say the ACLU is a joke, however I believe this Wikipedia article misquotes them.

First, there are two different references to ACLU findings in this article:

  • "fourteen fatalities from the use of pepper spray as of 1995"
  • "27 deaths in custody of people sprayed with pepper spray in California alone, since 1993"

Clearly at least one of these quotes is wrong. Reading the report cited for the second statement potentially explains the discrepancy. It actually says:

"In this report, the ACLU of Southern California identifies 26 deaths among people who were pepper-sprayed by police officers in the period Jan. 1, 1993, through June 1, 1995."

While we don't have ready access to the source for the first statement, I suspect it is a misquote, as the ACLU of Southern California's report on pepper spray does not conclude that pepper spray caused the fatalities. Instead it suggests additional research into the effects and a moratorium on it's widespread use. (talk) 04:16, 1 February 2008 (UTC)

BTW, Googling for "5,300,000 SHU" reveals that the spray in question is really a 2% solution of 5,3M SHU OC.. No wonder that "spraying" almost pure capsaicin oil felt like a bit weird idea to me. This error is also on the Scoville scale page.

Please review the founder of pepper spray for a more accurate information on pepper spray.

I think people have actually died from exposure to pepper spray. What is this "non-lethal" bullshit all about? Pepper spray can definitely have lasting effects as well -- 07:22, 16 November 2005 (UTC)

The definition of Non-Lethal comes from the Department of Defense. No product is completely "non-lethal," it indicates that in studies, the potential for death is statistically small. Even yelling at or striking someone has a potential of being deadly force, it depends on the person you're applying the force to and what pre-existing medical or neurological conditions they have. Yet we consider yelling at and striking people to be "non-lethal." Pyrogen 10:49, 9 June 2006 (UTC)

In 1994, the American Civil Liberties Union in Los Angeles claimed to have documented fourteen fatalities involving people who had been sprayed. Alan Parachini, director of public affairs, stated that even if the spray itself was not the cause death, autopsy results showed that it was a factor. He urged the Los Angeles Police Department to curtail its use of pepper spray until more research was done.

Can anybody please confirm or deny the claim about pelargonic acid morpholide used in Russia? --Shaddack 10:35, 16 November 2005 (UTC)

Used widely, wider than "natural" OC. Seems to be less effective but is preferred by manufacturers. --Varnav 11:06, 12 April 2006 (UTC)

Police in the UK[edit]

I believe the following sentence is incorrect, "Police, most of whom do not carry firearms, are trained to use pepper spray and carry it as part of their standard compliment." They carry CS spray, not pepper spray. Ben 21:02, 11 July 2006 (UTC) In response to the above comment, some Police Forces such as Northamptonshire, officers carry PAVA which is synthetic pepper spray. GP 19/01/08 —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 09:57, 19 January 2008 (UTC) In fact, now the majority of Police Forces in the UK use PAVA. Millis 23:35, 27 January 2008 (UTC)

purchasing information would be nice[edit]

where can you purchase it? in the uk pharmacies don't seem to sell it. In Germany they do.. -- 17:34, 28 November 2005 (UTC)

  • Try Google - you'll find tons of retailers there. Wikipideia has a policy of not hosting specifically commercial links, so that'll be your best bet. – ClockworkSoul 17:41, 28 November 2005 (UTC)

The UK pharmacies don't seem to sell it because it is illegal (talk) 22:26, 6 September 2010 (UTC)

Non-lethal nature?[edit]

The following statement seems to take a opposing position to ACLU's which isn't NPOV: "It is of a non-lethal nature, however, the American Civil Liberties Union claims to have documented fourteen fatalities from the use of pepper spray." "It is of a non-lethal nature" should be change to something such "it is generally though to be of a non-lethal nature, however..." in order to be more NPOV. --Cab88 12:06, 24 January 2006 (UTC)

Well, I think the nature is actually non-letal. It is not intended to kill. --Varnav 12:45, 12 April 2006 (UTC)
Who's definition of "non-lethal" and "less-lethal" are we using? The DOD/NATICK definition? If so, then its non-lethal. Pyrogen 10:49, 9 June 2006 (UTC)

An additional point needs to be raised regarding the safety of pepper spray when used against people with severe allergic reactions to chilli / etc.

A re-wording to NPOV could run:

Pepper spray is popularly held to be non-lethal, and the use of it in law enforcement contexts is predominantly as an alternative to intentionally lethal force.

And then add a new section: "Lethality debate"

So the controversy is encapsulated within an explicitly controversial / potentially nNPOV block. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 05:28, 8 October 2007 (UTC)


I really don't think the sloppy, unsupported sentence about the ACLU charges, which are summarily dismissed in the second clause, seems appropriate or well written. For quality control reasons I'm removing the clause and tidying up surrounding areas accordingly. Spad xiii 14:02, 20 February 2006 (UTC)

  • Fatalities are mentioned three separate times in the article. There needs to be a clarification as to how many people have died from this stuff for it to appear credible.

The American Civil Liberties Union documented fourteen fatalities from the use of pepper spray as of 1995 The Los Angeles Times has reported at least 61 deaths associated with police use of pepper spray since 1990 in the USA the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) documented 27 deaths in custody of people sprayed with pepper spray in California alone, since 1993 (talk) 08:04, 14 December 2007 (UTC)

The ACLU makes wild unsubstantiated claims all the time. They are not a credible scientific or criminal justice investigative organization: they are a political advocacy group. Their claims lack any legitimacy. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:31, 15 June 2009 (UTC)

Food product?[edit]

What is this "food product" fuss all about? It looks like a patent nonsense to me. In which of these definitions (copied from food) does Pepper spray fit?:

  • any substance or product, whether processed, partially processed or unprocessed, intended to be, or reasonably expected to be ingested by humans whether of nutritional value or not;
  • water and other drinks;
  • chewing gum;
  • articles and substances used as an ingredient or component in the preparation of food.

Duja 17:10, 23 March 2006 (UTC)

The active ingredient, capsaicin, is indeed a component of many foods, including peppers. Also, spraying something into the eyes is a form of ingestion, so pepper spray is "intended to be ingested". —Keenan Pepper 18:05, 23 March 2006 (UTC)
So is cyanide a component of many foods (almonds e.g.) and also "intended to be ingested", especially in Agatha Christie's novels. That still doesn't make it a "food product". I'm removing it. Duja 20:06, 23 March 2006 (UTC)
Wrong. Bitter almonds contain a compound, amygdalin, that sometimes breaks down into cyanide, but you don't eat bitter almonds, you eat sweet almonds, which contain no cyanide or amygdalin. —Keenan Pepper 23:33, 23 March 2006 (UTC)
The definition you cite is, as the food article says, a defition under Western food law. More informal definitions and/or different technical definitions of a food product may very well encompass pepper spray for the reasons Keenan Pepper has given. I put the "food product" part back into the introduction because it seemed reasonable and I assumed it was placed there in good faith by whoever did so originally. It sounds like this question might need an expert? –Sommers (Talk) 21:47, 27 March 2006 (UTC)
Yes I know it's the definition under "Western food law". How about a definition under common sense? I didn't question Keenan's good faith either, <kidding>just his sanity</kidding>. But I still wait for his explanation of that edit; the fact that pepper spray is made of something which is a food does not make it a food for itself. Many non-edible things are made of corn, for example. And the explanation that "it is intended for ingestion" is also skewed – of course it not intended for voluntary ingestion. Duja 22:08, 27 March 2006 (UTC)
Note that I didn't add it in the first place, I was just defending it against the accusation of "patent nonsense". —Keenan Pepper 22:26, 27 March 2006 (UTC)
I work with a guy who makes some pretty dang good beef jerky with the stuff. As far as I'm concerned it's perfectly safe for consumption... Uncomfortable? Yes, for most, but still entirely edible. Scowly (talk) 04:46, 2 July 2009 (UTC)
Edible does not mean intended for consumption. For example, semen is edible and frequently eaten, but it still is not intended for consumption. MykellM (talk) 23:32, 10 July 2009 (UTC)

frivolous statement[edit]

Long-term effects of pepper spray have not been effectively researched. Lets see millions of people everyday eat capsaicins for years on end, the statement might as well say: "Long-term effects of ketchup have not been effectively researched." and if were talking about exposure to the skin and eyes instead of the GI track, no one is exposed to pepper spray for a long time in that manner (maybe the poor schmucks in guantanamo bay, but thats sadly unconfirmed). If no one has a valid disagreement I'm removing the statement.--BerserkerBen 00:31, 29 March 2006 (UTC)

Keep - I don't know about you, but I don't often go sticking chilies in my eyes. Eating it is not the same thing ;) The statement also fits the patterin shown in other wikipedia articles on chemical weapons. -- Ch'marr 07:21, 31 March 2006 (UTC)
Delete or Move - "Long-term effects" should go to capsaicin article (if not already there) but they don't make sense in pepper spray. IOW, it is quite plausible that a person often eats capsaicine or it gets into the eyes, but as you said... Duja 15:59, 31 March 2006 (UTC)
Keep - The amount of capsaicin that one on the receiving end of pepper spray absorbs is many orders of magnitude higher than the amount in even a strong meal. That combined with the fact that it's affecting tissues that don't normally contact capsaicin makes it a horse of an entirely different color. – ClockworkSoul 23:55, 31 March 2006 (UTC)
Find actual research. I think the statement is simply false. Lots of people have done research on the long-term effects of pepper spray, and we should find reports and summarize them in the article. —Keenan Pepper 00:11, 1 April 2006 (UTC)
Comment. Maybe it should just shoule be rephrased for the start; I got lulled in by BerserkerBen's interpretation. If it's parsed as "later consequences of getting in contact with Pepper spray", it starts to make sense. Duja 19:50, 2 April 2006 (UTC)

Sorry for the lateness of my reply: I think Keenan Pepper is on the right track and after a quick pubmed search there is long term studies of capsaicin both injested, inhaled and exposed, I will be compilling and implanted the information soon.--BerserkerBen 14:54, 19 April 2006 (UTC)


AFAIK milk is and antidote, as well as sugar. Also you can wash OC off using alcohol. --Varnav 11:02, 12 April 2006 (UTC)

Any oily or even mildly hydrophobic substance. As capsaicins are hydrophobic water will not remove them, but another hydrophobic solvent will, thus alcohols (amphiphilic), Milk (emulsified fats or oils) or vegetable oils should do the job, residual pain will still be cause by capsaicins lodged on the neurons.--BerserkerBen 14:54, 19 April 2006 (UTC)

Remove the "Buy pepperspray" link[edit]

Hi, I think the "buy it online" link should be removed. It looks like a Wikipedia endorsement of a specific company selling the stuff, which I consider inappropriate. Cheers, Jo

Done. Next time be bold and do it yourself! —Keenan Pepper 17:40, 14 July 2006 (UTC)

Chemical warfare[edit]

Why is this grouped with chemical warfare? It's not used for warfare. It's used for self-defense and riot control. It's ineffective as a weapon of war. Nathan J. Yoder 03:27, 29 August 2006 (UTC)

It is considered a Riot Control Agent by military forces. Pyrogen 14:06, 2 December 2006 (UTC)
It was used as chemical warfare. Ranger patrols in the Vietnam carried huge CS cans as a expeditive "disengage helper" in case of facing strong opposition. It is (or "was", not sure abour this point) also used by the SAS.
Try CS on you (be cautious, use only an small amount and in open space) and you will see that CS is highly effective as a weapon of war: If you can not see or breath, you are incapacitated to shoot back. Randroide 15:05, 2 December 2006 (UTC)
There we are, I knew that they used it in Vietnam, but didn't want to go having to dig out a citation for it.
Sorry. I have not the source here (I am in a public facility, not at home) , but I will provide the citation. I promise, wait a few weeks, please. My source it is a book about the Rangers in Nam, published by Osprey Publishing if I remember well. But you are right: Unsourced assertions are useless. Cheers Randroide 16:39, 2 December 2006 (UTC)
Here it is... the source I promised: CS used in the Vietnam war.
Gas, mines, and explosives were as important to the Ranger as his rifle and rations. CS tear gas was employed to enable a team to break contact with the enemy. When pulling out of a fire fight, Rangers would attempt to head upwind, opening their gas canisters as they withdrew Source Ranger, behind enemy lines in Vietnam, page 121. Ron Field, Military Illustrated, ISBN 1903040043. Randroide 14:09, 9 December 2006 (UTC)
Sources for use by the SAS: "Fighting skills of the SAS" ISBN 1854876767 and "This is the SAS" ISBN 0853685223. Randroide 16:45, 2 December 2006 (UTC)

Having tried CS, I can honestly say I didn't like it. Pyrogen 15:57, 2 December 2006 (UTC)

Sure: The stuff really works. I tried CS during a training course and since them I have the utmost respect for the CS can I always carry in my belt. Cheers. Randroide 14:09, 9 December 2006 (UTC)

Why all the discussion about CS gas here? The article is about pepper spray. I agree with Mr. Yoder - the classification with chemical warfare is inappropriate and amounts to a back-door NPOV violation. It should be removed. HiramShadraski 19:42, 22 April 2007 (UTC)

Wait...let's be logical. Is the item a weapon? Yes. Is it a chemical? Yes. Is its use as a weapon effective only because of thr chemical ingredient? Yes. Ergo it is a chemical weapon. 10:19, 24 June 2007 (UTC)

Depends on what you mean by "weapon". OC sprays are intended to get a person out of a potentially violent situation while doing minimal, or no, injury to the opponent; it could be argued that that's not how most people understand "weapons" to function. The word "weapon", more often, refers to tools intended to do harm, injury, or cause death, not tools painstakingly designed to minimize the risk of same. (talk) 03:09, 8 February 2008 (UTC)

I can't believe it is even being argued whether it is a "weapon" or not. Of course it's a weapon, in fact it's a chemical weapon. Regardless of your definition, OC spray along with every other "weapon" in all senses can be employed to seriously fuck someone up if in the wrong hands. (talk) 17:31, 2 November 2008 (UTC)
Quite literally anything can be employed to "seriously fuck someone up in the wrong hands", so that's really quite meaningless. Common definition of words is the only way language has any value in sharing information, so the definition IS the key. That said, temporarily blinding someone or causing pain IS harm, even if minimal, so it does fit the definition of a weapon. Merennulli (talk) 20:40, 21 August 2009 (UTC)
It is a chemical manufactured expressly to inflict harm or pain. That isn't an incidental use, but its primary purpose. Ergo, it is a chemical weapon, even if it is not intended for, or (typically) capable of, killing or inflicting permanent harm. Added it to the chemical weapons category. (talk) 20:24, 27 March 2014 (UTC)

Added POV tag to "effects" section[edit]

I have added a POV tag, for the obviously advocative language in the "Effects" section. Upon closer examination I now see the reason for the inclusion in the "Chemical Warfare" category, but the non-NPOV character of the base article is, I think, distractive. HiramShadraski 14:15, 26 April 2007 (UTC)

It's been 4 months. I'm removing the tag. --gwc 03:30, 31 August 2007 (UTC)
Why? The language has not changed. HiramShadraski 04:07, 31 August 2007 (UTC)
Over a week w/ no response from gwc. Restoring it. HiramShadraski 10:52, 7 September 2007 (UTC)
Removing tag. Effects section is well-referenced and neutral. Kaomso 03:09, 10 November 2007 (UTC)
Effects section is well-referenced, but is certainly not neutral. Tag restored. HiramShadraski 14:48, 10 November 2007 (UTC)
Unless those who put the NPOV tag are going to edit the section to improve it, the back and forth adding and taking the tag away with lags of months is not appropriate. I will change the title to this section so that editors can find it. I will check back to see if anyone has taken the trouble to edit the section and remove the NPOV tag. The only comment that actually says why the tag was problematic is the first from April 2007. The concerns may actually be about WP:tone and WP:soap I think. Please those with the concern, fix the article. Fremte (talk) 23:06, 4 April 2008 (UTC)


I can't say im any sort of expert on laws, but I happen to be a New York resident who bought some pepperspray recently from a uniform supply store (in New York), and they just made me fill out a form saying who I was and that I haven'tbeen convicted of any felonies. This is contrary to what is said in the article, that in New York, "Pepper spray may only be sold by licensed firearms dealers or pharmacists," as the store I bought it from was neither. I would also doubt that this store was breaking laws, as it seemed (from my brief visit) that police officers were a major customer base. Therefore, i took out that line untill someone can say for sure what NY laws are regarding pepperspray DenimForce2.0 21:02, 26 May 2007 (UTC)

Pepper spray would not be regulated by the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention as it is a chemical agent. Biological weapons use "living" microbes such as bacteria, viruses, fungi, etc. to infect the enemy. However, pepper spray would be banned from use in combat under the 1997 Chemical Weapons Convention- 18:05, 10 November 2007 (UTC)

i belive that the legality of bear spray in canada may have changed as i went to Canadian tire to buy some having been recently robbed of my sansa e260 rockboxed and was told the police said they're no longer aloud to sell it, same with the other stores i went to ~DJ BlueFoxx(aka the crazy screaming weird kid at Surrey central Sunday night when noone else would help) —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 05:03, 12 February 2008 (UTC)

In Canada its a Prohibited Weapon under "Former Prohibited Weapons order No. 1". Its not a restricted weapon but a prohibited one in the same classification as automatic rifles and machine guns, as well as a variety of other "weapons". The link they are using as a source is wrong. MachinistJim (talk) 16:15, 15 June 2008 (UTC)

According to the Japanese language version of this page Pepper spray is not regulated in Japan. "日本の法規制 特に規制されていない。" Google translates this as. "Laws and regulations of Japan Not specifically regulated." I will confirm this with the police then add it. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 09:02, 22 January 2010 (UTC)

I actually live in Japan, and just yesterday I waved a spray cannister in the face of a guy who was being overly aggressive. He backed off, but we went to the police, and they told me I'd have to stay until they checked if the thing was legal or not. It turns out, it's only legal for a woman to carry it, and even she'd have to provide good reasons for why she's carrying it. I will have to present myself at the police station again when they'll call me, and will end up guilty of a minor offense. They said the penalty may be anything from simply being told "don't do it again", to paying a fine (which, I was told, would be cheap for an offense like this). Seems like either way, I got off pretty easy (unless they lied to make sure I wouldn't run from Japan... but I doubt it because the tone of the entire thing was rather casual and friendly). I'm new here and I don't know if this warrants an edit of the article (I can't give references or anything), so I'll leave it up to you guys to decide that.--Maxy300 (talk) 01:07, 16 July 2014 (UTC)

Corrected sweden part. Sweden law is written in a way, making a license required for each separate weapon (for example, if you own 2 handgunds of the same model, you would still need 2 licenses). NO weapon is explicity illegal in the law, Instead this is controlled in the license issuance process. Its pretty cumbersome to get license for pepperspray in sweden, but its not impossible. Its judged from a case to case basis. In fact, you as a civilian could legally own a bazooka or a "minigun" in sweden, if you manage to get a license for it. Sebastiannielsen (talk) 23:09, 12 January 2011 (UTC)

That's fine - I edited your change slightly for flow and grammar. If you could provide a citation for it, though, that would be great. Mark Shaw (talk) 00:10, 13 January 2011 (UTC)

Legality in Australia[edit]

In Western Australia you can legally purchase Pepper Spray over the counter.

--Dan541 12:26, 28 May 2007 (UTC)

In ACT, NT and SA you can legally purchase it anywhere too, not sure about Queensland. What I'm curious about is, what's the status of bear or dog spray in NSW? I can't find any caselaw on it, and the Weapons Prohibition Act (1998) NSW Schedule 1 (22) outlines 'defence or anti-personel spray', but doesn't touch on animal control sprays. (talk) 20:54, 8 May 2008 (UTC)

Video removed[edit]

The video used to show the effects of pepper spray in action was a link to a protest at George W. Bush's inauguration. The pepper spraying in this video didn't actually occur until over 5 minutes after the start, plus the video was a presentation of a protest advocating a particular POV regarding a political matter. If this video was shorter and started at the point of the spraying, it might be OK, but I'd prefer to see something a little less inflammatory (no pun intended) and more focused on the effects of pepper spray.

I did find a great YouTube video that could be used, but I'm pretty sure it's footage of a copyrighted show from a guy named Ryan Stock. If someone could find similar footage, or if someone could confirm this footage is not copyrighted, either would be perfect.

I was torn about just removing the section and not putting something up, and I would have left the previous video up if the relevant content was closer to the beginning of the clip. I did search for a replacement video, but most of what I could find was just law enforcement or military training videos and none of them really seemed to document or show the effects of pepper spray in any useful way to the average person.

Davebenham 05:58, 14 July 2007 (UTC)

peaceful demonstrators[edit]

There are also Pepper-spray projectile available, which can be fired from a paintball gun. Having been used for years against peaceful demonstrators [2], it is increasingly being used by police in routine interventions.[3]

... I think this article shouldn't turn into a political platform. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 03:01, August 29, 2007 (UTC)


Why not include a section dedicated to the debate regarding the lethality (or non-lethal nature) of pepper spray, instead of debating it here? —Preceding unsigned comment added by Davebenham (talkcontribs) 23:16, 1 October 2007 (UTC)

Non-lethal arguments?[edit]

Wikipedia's article on Non-lethal_force clearly states they "are weapons intended to be unlikely to kill or to cause great bodily injury to a living target." Although the Non-lethal_force article does redirect to Less-lethal_weapons, is that what everyone is upset about? Non-lethal instead of Less-lethal? Brother.

Personally, I'd like to see the terms Non-lethal_force and Less-lethal_weapons and pages that reference them reworked. Where did these terms come into use? Are they industry defined terms, political terms, or government classifications? Reworking these the discussion of these terms and how they are integrated into other wikipedia articles might be the only way to get rid of the neutrality tag on this page.

Davebenham 23:41, 1 October 2007 (UTC)

Someone added a comment about spraying causing perminant blindness or death due to "hydrolic needle" effect. That looks very suspcious and should possibly be deleted. DonPMitchell (talk) 18:43, 28 September 2008 (UTC)
I did a quick search and found a source describing the "hydraulic needle effect" as resulting in minor injuries. I agree with the removal/rewording. Flatscan (talk) 19:46, 28 September 2008 (UTC)

Legality in Germany[edit]

Even minors can purchase pepper spray in Germany as long as it's solely use is the defense against animals. Using pepper spray agaunst people is not allowed, but if it's self defense you won't get prosecuted. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:05, 28 October 2007 (UTC)


I was seeking information about the difference between OC 'stream' and 'foam' dispensers. Anyone? 18:35, 7 November 2007 (UTC)

  • OC is delivered in four different methods: Cone, stream, foam, and one that could fill a room with a cloud of the stuff.

Spray delivered by the cone method acts much like an aerosol can. It starts out small, but by the time it reaches the target at the optimal spray distance (about 4-6ft), it's covering about a 2x2ft area. The chances of you spraying a bystander or fellow officer are increased. I'm pretty sure there are also more issues with blowback from the wind too, but having never used this type, I can't really comment.

Stream and foam are pretty much designed to do the same thing by delivering a concentrated localized blast that's less likely to hit anyone other than your intended target (streams can splash a bit though). A stream can be rendered ineffective if the person delivering it provides a constant blast rather than the recommended one second bursts as the constant supply of oils could wash away the pepper extract before allowing it time to react. Foam sticks though.

The venting type is mainly used for riots. The police wear masks and fire cannisters into crowds.

Hope that helps a little. 04:17, 16 November 2007 (UTC)


I am far from being a politically correct person, but the picture of a white police officer spraying a hispanic man does have a ring of racism. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:56, 12 February 2008 (UTC)

Effectiveness of civilian use[edit]

It seems to me like there should be a section on weather people (esp. females) who carry pepper spray for self-defense are actually able to effectively use it when defending themselves to attack. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:29, 16 February 2008 (UTC)

Indeed, and a section which has a report (if such does exist) of how secure the people feel they are in the countries where pepper spray is legal, in comparison to countries where pepper spray is illegal. Do the people feel more secure, knowing that anyone can be walking around with pepper sprays or do they feel more insecure? And is the pepperspray actually making that country secure? Or does the pepper spray get abused by civilians (and what about minors?) or is it mostly correctly used? And so forth... Mr Mo (talk) 14:39, 9 March 2008 (UTC)

Denmark sentence moved here[edit]

This sentence is problematic: "This was introduced following the shooting (and often killing) of a number of mentally ill citizens who had behaved violently or in a threatening manner, leaving the police force in want of a defensive, non-lethal weapon." The sentence contains a dramatic assertion without reference. It falls under this guideline: Verifiability#Burden_of_evidence and does not belong in the article written like this. Unless clear documentation of this can be cited, it cannot be supported to have it restored to the article. I had reverted an edit about it but this was disputed, hence moved here for further discussion. --Fremte (talk) 14:59, 26 July 2008 (UTC)

It is untrue what you write. You reverted my edit. It is plain that the "disputed sentence" was evident before my edit. So you should take up you grievances with whoever introduced it. However, this has been covered in abundance in the Danish press. Feel free to add a "source needed" tag. Otherwise, your arguments are wholly without merit. --Law Lord (talk) 21:47, 26 July 2008 (UTC)
The sentence has the wrong tone and is in generalities. "often killing" is problematic, If it is in the Danish press then you need to provide a reference. Simple reversion is not appropriate, so you suggested in my talk page. --Fremte (talk) 21:51, 26 July 2008 (UTC)
Please note that "often killing" is not a phrase I wrote. Rather that phrase was already in the article. However, since the phrase simply states the facts concerning the Danish police, I ask that you please explain why it is problematic to explain the truth. Obviously, you know very little of the Danish police. Otherwise, you might suggest re-phrasing to "extremely often without consequence or regret". Anyway, I have added two refs. There are many more. This discussion is an example of why I find Wikipedia so revolting. Cheers. --Law Lord (talk) 21:54, 26 July 2008 (UTC)
You would have avoided this whole issue if you had simply added the references in the first place. I have corrected again the grammar error you reverted and added an inline tag. As for finding WP revolting, no one is forcing you to contribute. This is a wording issue now that you have added the citations. We are almost there (that is unless you really find it revolting and have quit). I would suggest that we might be working correctly now per normal collaboration in WP, ignoring some of the manner in which the exchange has gone. It would be best to have "offten killing" replaced by the actual info of how many. --Fremte (talk) 22:08, 26 July 2008 (UTC)
You are right, and certainly I tend to contribute not so much for the aforementioned reason. However, I sometimes do contribute when certain facts about my area of expertise are presented too far from the truth for me to bear. I hope for your understanding in this. I have now changed the wording per your suggestion, though probably it can be improved upon for a more smooth sound. Cheers --Law Lord (talk) 13:33, 28 July 2008 (UTC)
I have changed the part about Denmark just now, but I am still not very satisfied with it as it is now. The two cited sources said nothing about what is written in the article, so I removed them. When you add references, please make sure they actually confirm the material. Do not just add some random Danish news article about police and peppersprays just because most people wont be able to read it and decide whether it's relevant or not. I realise this discussion is almost 3 years old, but I hope someone can find a relevant source to reference to. I faintly remember something similar to these stories being mentioned in Danish media in the past, but I haven't been able to find an online source myself as of now. Sandertams (talk) 16:31, 20 May 2011 (UTC)

Apologies. Split needed[edit]

Apologies. I moved this article from Pepper Spray to Oleoresin capsicum, when in actual fact, what is needed are two separate articles. Pepper Spray is one use of OC, and is usually a more potent concentration of the chemical compared with other uses. --Rebroad (talk) 16:26, 26 November 2008 (UTC)

I don't see that either a move or split is necessary. These are the closely-related articles:
I don't see any content in this article that should be moved to Capsaicin. I support moving this article back to Pepper spray, the most common name. Flatscan (talk) 05:02, 27 November 2008 (UTC)
The current content is all about pepper spray which can be made from a variety of different compounds. I have moved the article back to pepper spray. Maybe we can create an oleoresin capsicum page as this has many uses outside the weapon area, e.g. as a food ingredient. Cacycle (talk) 05:17, 27 November 2008 (UTC)
Is there a distinction between capsaicin and oleoresin capsicum? As far as I can tell from the articles, OC is concentrated capsaicin extracted and refined by a specific process. Flatscan (talk) 05:04, 28 November 2008 (UTC)

INIWIC document[edit] inserted a large amount of text here, apparently from INIWIC document ALMAR 305-98. It may be usable as a primary source. Flatscan (talk) 04:06, 8 February 2009 (UTC)

Promotional Links[edit]

The series of edits represented by this diff [1] smells like link spam to me. However, it seems to me to be relevant enough to leave it alone. I invite other editors' opinions. Mark Shaw (talk) 16:48, 10 March 2009 (UTC)

I agree. In my experience, online refs for these products tend to be manufacturers' (maybe okay) or resellers' (probably not) websites. I cautiously accept this instance. Flatscan (talk) 04:05, 11 March 2009 (UTC)

Lots of missing cites[edit]

Quite a lot of this article is tagged as needing citation. Sometime within the next week I intend to go through and delete any sections/paragraphs which carry a fact tag older than a year - in case any editors want to get a jump on providing these. Mark Shaw (talk) 00:26, 28 March 2009 (UTC)

It would be more helpful to simply add the sources yourself. We should remove false and misleading content; or rewrite it to adhere to our policies. The rest should be sourced but not under threat of removal. -- Banjeboi 13:33, 28 March 2009 (UTC)
The tags I saw are mostly or all in the Pepper spray#Legality section, on the individual jurisdictions. I think the information is not valuable enough to leave uncited indefinitely. Flatscan (talk) 23:45, 28 March 2009 (UTC)
I've seen this happen soooo many times. An entire section is littered with fact tags. To me this is disingenuous as the information isn't untrue as much as presently unsourced inline. I've worked through a few very large lists and almost everything was (surprisingly) accurate just missing inline cites. I'll pitch in to add sources if others will also help. -- Banjeboi 05:50, 29 March 2009 (UTC)

Photo of Marines[edit]

Are you sure that the photo with the marines demonstrating the effects of pepper spray were are not in fact demonstrating the effects of CS gas? That should be determined definitively. Contributions/ (talk) 20:23, 15 June 2009 (UTC)

While no one could be certain, without having been there when the picture was taken; It was in the 80', 90's and first decade of the 00's extremely uncommon for Marines to do the pad training after CS exposure and VERY common to do pad training as an additional module of Pepper Spray training. Most often only Military Police and certain Security force Marines were involved in exposure to Pepper Spray - due to it's illegality for use in war and to it's availability for use in policing type actions. The pad training was to encourage the MP's and Security Force trainees to understand their level of incapacitation and how quickly they or their target could recover from the use of the agent, as well as giving them the tools to work through the distraction of an accidental exposure in the presence of a hostile person. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Gunny2862 (talkcontribs) 13:24, 21 September 2010 (UTC)

why redirected from bear spray?[edit]

Since bear spray, as I understand it, is a good bit more potent than pepper spray, at least the self-defense sort, why is it directed to this page? Seems a separate entry is needed, but I'm not expert.

bleckb—Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 05:42, 26 July 2010 (UTC) Hi, I don't know if you are still here and I wrote a long story on pepper spray, but some defense use pepper sprays are 50% stronger than bear sprays. The UDAP defense spray is 15% OC 3,000,000 SHU and 3% MC or CRC. Bear spray is regulated and has to be at least 1% MC but not over 2%. There is nothing about OC or SHU. The only number they care about is MC — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 01:41, 21 April 2012 (UTC)

Notability of Canadian home/car-defense system story?[edit]

Regarding this edit: I don't think it's notable enough to include in the article. Anyone else? Mark Shaw (talk) 17:06, 20 April 2011 (UTC)

Whether it's "notable" or not (I don't know if individual facts incorporated in an article all have to be notable, that would slow things down around here), it is both interesting and properly cited. I would say it should remain. --CliffC (talk) 17:40, 20 April 2011 (UTC)

Merge Mace into this article[edit]

I suggest merging Mace (spray) into this article, since the terms seem to be used interchangeably. The Mace page says "Most Mace sold today by Mace Security International is pepper spray", so it seems sensible to merge these two, as Mace is simply a brand of pepper spray. Gymnophoria (talk) 12:44, 29 June 2011 (UTC)

Chemical Mace is not interchangeable with Pepper Spray. They are two entirely different chemicals that only share a common purpose. If you want to merge pepper spray, chemical mace, tear gas and others into a common defensive aerosol spray article then by all means, but they are not in anyway the same products. In fact, many countries which allow pepper spray, ban Chemical Mace, because of its phenacyl chloride component.

I recommend that the entire overarching subject of lachrymatory agents (tear gas, OC, mace, etc.) be reorganised using Wikipedia's disambiguation facilities. They are all clearly a distinct category of "non-lethal" (albeit damaging) weapons, perhaps even suggesting a higher-order heirarchy of non-lethal weapons within Wikipedia's structure. I believe such an approach would be the most neutral regarding brand names and the varied legal status of these weapons worldwide. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 15:32, 29 September 2011 (UTC)

Mace is most certainly not synonymous with pepper spray. Mace, a registered trade mark, contains three components: capsicum (the component in pepper that gives its heat), tear gas and a UV dye for identification. There are other such formulations that are sold under different trade names, as well as just pepper spray. Hence, the two terms should not be merged since they are not the same formulas, although they do have a common function. SRQMark (talk) 21:07, 1 November 2011 (UTC)

Allow me to concur that mace not be merged into the pepper spray article. As mace was one of the first commercially available lachrymatory agent it has taken on a generic meaning in common conversation much like kleenix for tissues, etc. However, mace is a specific commercial product and proper noun quite distinct from generic pepper sprays. — Preceding unsigned comment added by ProfKrueger (talkcontribs) 03:36, 29 November 2011 (UTC)

Remove "Death" section and cite #47[edit]

Cite #47 mentioned in the "Death" section, the man that dies was Tasered, Pepper Sprayed and Arrested, any of those three or a million other things could have caused his death, so as there is no evidence of anyone dieing from it so far the section should be removed pending such evidence. It would appear from my research that most deaths around pepper spray land up being caused my positional asphyxiation and not merely the spray itself. Again, IF and WHEN such evidence appears and can be properly cited then it can and should be re-added, for example any final report on thie persons death indicating Pepper Spray as the direct cause of death. (talk) 14:55, 24 August 2011 (UTC)

Unregulated citation needed[edit]

In Romania pepper spray is unregulated.[citation needed]

Does anyone else notice how retarded it is to ask for citation about something that is unregulated? Cite what? The nonexistent law on the subject? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:06, 2 October 2011 (UTC)

Use on peaceful protestors[edit]

The events at Occupy UC Davis mean that there has been a lot of editing of this article recently, though thankfully without descending into edit warring. Do we want to mention in the lead section that pepper spray has been used on peaceful protestors or not? I don't think the UC Davis incident is significant enough to mention specifically in the lead, but as I attempted to show in the references for this edit (I'm linking to the revert here since it includes all the relevant content), this was not the first time that pepper spray has been used on peaceful protestors. NotFromUtrecht (talk) 09:08, 22 November 2011 (UTC)

I think that probably falls under crowd control which is already mentioned in the lead in. Any tool can be used inappropriately. (talk) 02:23, 26 November 2011 (UTC)

I don't think it needs to be listed under "Incidents", either. Now the use of pepper spray in a California Walmart in order to get merchandise during Black Friday may be a more interesting incident. See, for example, at CNN. — Arthur Rubin (talk) 22:18, 26 November 2011 (UTC)
I still think the UC Davis incident is undue weight; however, if included, it should be compared with uses of firearms, water cannons, bean-bag-guns, and/or tear gas against (allegedly) peaceful protesters. — Arthur Rubin (talk) 01:29, 27 November 2011 (UTC)
The whole "incidents" section should probably be removed and simply link to related articles on incidents worth mentioning. The outcry over the UC Davis incident is enough to warrant its own article, so linking makes sense, but the one line mention isn't. The inaccurate black friday shopping incident definitely is not relevant and should be removed, so I have done so. If there is question about its inaccuracy, it referred to the early story that the woman as using the pepper spray to beat out other shoppers as if thatt were fact. Surveillance videos have since shown it may have been a valid self defense use. Merennulli (talk) 02:39, 29 November 2011 (UTC)
I don't agree that the UC Davis incident is enough to warrant its own article, but a "See also" link would be acceptable. if it were an article. And I think the initial, although possibly incorrect. interpretation of the "Black Friday" incident is as likely as the interpretation of the UC Davis incident treated here as "fact". WP:NOTNEWS; we can wait for the facts to come in, if there are notable incidents of use of pepper spray.
I've added an "Off-topic" tag to go with the "undue weight" tag; perhaps that will discourage "expansion" before further discussion can take place. — Arthur Rubin (talk) 15:40, 30 November 2011 (UTC)
Per NotFromUtrecht, established incidents of use on peaceful protesters might be listed, but we shouldn't use current events unless absolutely necessary and unequivocal. — Arthur Rubin (talk) 15:43, 30 November 2011 (UTC)
I agree the entire section should be removed. If the individual incident is notable, it may warrant its own article. But, it doesn't fit in this article. We don't list cases of (in)famous shootings in the gun section, or famous stabbings in the page on swords.JoelWhy (talk) 16:24, 13 March 2012 (UTC)

No responses to this, so I'm going to go ahead and remove.JoelWhy (talk) 21:50, 20 March 2012 (UTC)

Add new section? or to existing[edit]

Hi, I was trying to chose a pepper spray and was very confused.Seems a lot of hype "marketing" After I learned, I wrote a story on pepper spray

I would like to get in a few points but not sure where they should go.

1) is that some defense sprays are very weak with only .18% Capsaicin & Related Capsaicinoids ,with the stronger ones being 30 times hotter We have all heard the stories about the spray doing noting. These may put a person in danger.

2) That there are three numbers people use to rate the effectiveness of pepper spray, the percent of OC, the SHU and the percent of Capsaicin & Related Capsaicinoids or CRC. A bear spray is required to have at least 1% and not more than 2% Capsaicin & Related Capsaicinoids.

3) some personal use pepper sprays are 50% stronger than bear sprays. (one defense spray is 15% OC 3,000,000 SHU and 3% MC or CRC Bear spray is regulated and has to be at least 1% MC but not over 2%. There is nothing about OC or SHU. The only number they care about is MC

I think this would be a good place to educate people. ie a 18% OC Spray may mean nothing if the Capsaicin & Related Capsaicinoids are only .24

A 15,000,000 SHU many mean nothing if it's diluted to 2% OC. This is how they fool people Would love help or suggestions Steve — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:34, 21 April 2012 (UTC)

a notice[edit]

also pepper sprays are suitable for self defence of disabled persons — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2A02:587:7C02:3700:D472:F69D:25BD:5 (talk) 19:38, 18 April 2016 (UTC)