Cocaine is a hell of a drug, but getting shocked with a Taser while riding high on methamphetamines probably beats any white-knuckled cocaine experience hands down. And that's exactly what happened to some lucky sheep in a new study that tested the effects of Tasers on meth-addled targets, funded in part by Taser International.
There's at least some scientific reasoning behind all the apparent madness. Growing abuse of methamphetamines has led to arrest-related deaths in situations where law enforcement officers used their Tasers on drug-intoxicated suspects. The latest study was designed to test whether electronic control devices (e.g. Tasers) can lead to dangerous cardiac responses in meth-intoxicated humans, with sheep standing in for people.
The less-lethal device of choice was the Taser X26, a standard law enforcement tool which can fire at suspects from a distance of 35 feet. Researchers shocked sixteen anesthetized sheep after dosing the animals with an IV drip of methamphetamine hydrochloride.
Some of the smaller sheep weighing less than 70.5 pounds suffered exacerbated heart symptoms related to meth use. But neither the smaller nor larger sheep showed signs of the ventricular fibrillation condition, a highly abnormal heart rhythm that can become fatal.
The study that appears in the journal Academic Emergency Medicine openly lists a few caveats. Aside from being partially funded by Taser International, the study authors include two physicians who represent medical consultants and stockholders of the company. One of the two is also the medical director of Taser International.
Still, Taser has an understandable interest in assessing the safety of its less-lethal devices in these types of extreme conditions. Taser devices have evolved into a wide-ranging family that includes Taser shotgun cartridges that fire from a 12-gauge shotgun at up to 100 feet. The company has also teamed up with the Pentagon to develop shock cartridges for a grenade launcher.
Taser has even had its employees put themselves on the firing line to vouch for the safety of its products.
Certainly police would rather have less-lethal options for tricky situations involving meth. We can all probably agree that less Taser use is better, but that they are certainly preferable to more lethal methods of subduing criminals in certain situations. Outraged animal rights activists, however, can begin writing their letters of protest now.
Thank you Popsci. Now I can never look at sheep the same way again.
hahahah wow what a bad day for sheep
Ever wonder what the sheep looks like in the front when Bubba is behind it?
So someone fibrillates after being shot with a taser, just shoot him again - problem solved.
that Sh!ts Fuc*d
I wonder very much where on earth that photo came from.
"The company has also teamed up with the Pentagon to develop shock cartridges for a grenade launcher."
That's intresting. Almost as much as methed sheep getting tasered.
Nice to highlight the imbalance in the study. Study by taser for taser. Big surprise that it shows limited or no side effects. Great way to counter lawsuits. Now all it needs is an uninvolved party to corroborate the results then it might have some weight.
On the other side of that defense wall I put up. I think anyone who uses any stimulant and creates problems doesn't have a leg to stand on because before they got high/drunk/whatever they were not high and had the conscious ability to measure the ramifications of becoming intoxicated.
As far as heart issue blames go though anyone on meth should educate themselves it causes irreversible brain and cardiovascular system damage. So if they die after being tasered it's likely because the meth damaged the cardiovascular system before the shock which just likely exacerbated the underlying issue.
the after photo is here.
This product needs to be tested on more Taser stockholders and less Taser employees and sheep
I'm no animal activist, but don't you think it's unfair to take innocent sheep, put them on meth, and tazer them for the safety of drug addicts who lets face it, if they died the world would be fine if not slightly better with out them?
just a thought
Ever feel how thick a sheep's wool coat is? It is about 4 inches thick and it is difficult to reach their hide. Try Tasering them through all that wool hair.
Do sheep get meth mouth, did eating weed lead to later meth use in sheep, wont the wool protect the sheep from the shocks a little, will counting meth sheep prevent you from falling asleep?
Would that be a sheep-leather handbag you're selling wowow?
How horrible =( poor sheep.
I found where the image came from. It's from a 2007 New Zealand movie called 'Black Sheep'. I saw the commercial for it years ago and I thought that it was just a joke...but it's not...havn't seen it either but I'm not interested
As for the "maaaaaad as hell" subtitle, that's from Howard Beale's speech of the same name - listen to it, it's funny!
This should be a tshirt caption contest.
Man, that picture is hilarous. Anyone reminded of that Simpson's Episode?....TOMACCO!
Dear PopSci, that picture is incredibly misleading. A careful reading of the article indicates that the sheep were fully anesthetized when undergoing the test. The fast/casual browser is led to think there was some kind of terrible cruelty going on here...not to say that this research isn't whack. The experiment would be better controlled if the animals were awake as meth + adrenaline is more likely to give a nasty cardiac response.
That's immoral and unjustified cruelty. The "scientists" behind this experiment should be tasered after being forced to consume meth to get a taste of what they did to the helpless animals. Sadistic bastards.
dontbother, don't bother reading the comment above you.
- Taser probably sponsored a study because it's a responsible thing to do. They know that their products will be used in these situations -- now they have some concept of how well they work. Plus they have an answer if they're challenged on this safety issue.
- Nobody is preventing anyone else from doing another study to verify/disprove the results.
- They used sheep because that's about all that they could do. They anesthetized them to e humane. Would be nice to be able to use a few hard core druggies for the test, but it's not going to happen.
yes. yes i am. now back on topic i also agree with Jedigeek93, to an extent. i agree its bad to test on animals but the fact that he wants to do it on a human instead and doesn't care if they die, well thats just wrong. must be one of those religious freaks that don't believe in second chances. also SHOULD(key word there) something die during this test, i would rather it be something that is not aware of its surrounding like a human
LOL! That picture of the sheep is brilliant! It certainly looks meth-addled or looking for some "tomacco!"
This picture looks like it was taken just moments before a photographers death!
Just get some meth users to sign a consent form, pay them a few dollars and then taz them. Leave the sheep alone.
LOL I LOVE IT LOL
Well at least this explains Ted Nugent
How do I sign up?
That's incredibly cruel and cowardly experimentation. It is also inaccurate as body size is always a factor where both drugs and tasers are concerned.
I propose that we find some Republican Teabagger types and perform this procedure on them. That would prove to be far more indicative of the true effects on humans. Not to mention entertaining.
Afterward, we could attach electrodes to the nuts of the sub-human vermin who are conducting these cruel and useless experiments and administer full amperage, for an indefinite amount of time.
According to one of them who posted earlier, as long as they are "fully anesthetized" no harm's been done.