Quito: The toll from drinking toxic liquor in Ecuador has risen to 50 following the death of two more people, the health ministry said. The ministry also said that a total of 244 cases of poisoning from drinking adulterated alcohol have now been confirmed, while another 355 patients remain on the list of possible poisoning victims.
As of Aug 25 the number of deaths from the toxic drink was 48, but Thursday one person was reported dead in the Andean province of Azuay and another in the Amazon province of Napo.
Fatalities from drinking liquor mixed with methanol were first detected on July 14, when 20 cases were reported in the southwestern coastal province of Los Rios.
The poisoning cases spread to other provinces, which prompted the government to declare a nationwide “state of emergency” and to ban liquor consumption in a number of areas. More than 15 brands of liquor have been banned by Ecuadorian health authorities, who have launched an operation to remove the adulterated alcohol from the market.
At the end of August a judge jailed the manager of the suspected bottling plant for the toxic liquor. (IANS)