3 die in New Mexico from drinking hand sanitizer

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SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico health officials say three people have died, three others are in critical condition and one person is permanently blind after apparently drinking hand sanitizer that contained methanol.

The Department of Health said Friday that the cases were reported to the state poison control center. The first case came in early May.

The others have occurred since May 29.

The health department couldn’t immediately say what the circumstances were in the recent cases, but authorities have noted that within the homeless community, some people with substance abuse issues have been known to use sanitizer and other products as a substitute for alcohol.

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