What is Pepper Spray?
Pepper spray is a nonlethal aerosol spray made with the pepper derivative oleorsein capiscum (or OC). It is used to cause temporary blindness and incapacitate an attacker. You should only use pepper spray if you are threatened or your life is in danger. It is a crime to use pepper spray to commit malicious acts.
A steady burst of 3-5 seconds will turn almost any attacker, no matter how “tough”, into a blind crybaby, and allow you to either escape, or take control of the situation. Some brands of pepper spray will also leave an invisible chemical on the attacker which will help the Police identify them.
Before you buy a container of Pepper Spray, always look at the expiration date. You will need to buy a new can when it expires. Most brands last for about 2 years.
How does pepper spray work?
Pepper spray is an inflammatory agent. When the spray comes into contact with mucous membranes (eyes, nose, throat and lungs), it causes immediate dilation of the capillaries. Temporary blindness and instant inflammation of the nose, throat and lungs will occur immediately after the spray comes into contact with the mucous membranes. The attacker will experience difficulty breathing, coughing, choking, sneezing, severe burning sensations to the eyes, nose, throat and skin, and nausea.
The inflammation will last anywhere from 15 minutes to approximately one hour.
Is Pepper Spray Legal?
Pepper spray is legal in all 50 States in the U.S. However, possession and/or use may be regulated or prohibited by law in some jurisdictions including your city or town. If you are not 100% sure that pepper spray is legal to use and carry in your locale, check with your local Police department.
Where is Pepper Spray Prohibited?
You cannot carry pepper spray on board a commercial aircraft. If you do, you can be charged with a Federal Crime and a $25,000 dollar fine. You may not be allowed to carry pepper spray into Federal buildings and State buildings, if in doubt…leave it at home.
Various Pepper Spray State Restrictions:
NEW YORK – New York residents may only purchase defense sprays from licensed Firearms Dealers or licensed Pharmacists in that state.
MASSACHUSETTS – Massachusetts residents may only purchase defense sprays from licensed Firearms Dealers in that state.
MICHIGAN – Pepper Spray can be no stronger then a 2% concentration of OC (see top of this article).
WISCONSIN – Pepper Spray can be no stronger then a 10% concentration of OC. Can must be between 15-60 grams only. The bottle must also have a “safety” which locks into place.