FOUO Central Florida Intelligence Exchange Chemical Suicide Identification Guide for 911 Communications, February 2011.
U.S. Army Surgeon General Brief on Decreasing Suicides in the Army, February 2, 2010.
Detergent suicide is a newer method of committing suicide that appears to be gaining in popularity. According to reports suicide rates are on the increase. One method that appears to be on the rise is the use of common house hold chemicals to make a lethal gaseous combination.This combination of ingredients yields Hydrogen Sulfide Gas (H2S).
Hydrogen sulfide is considered a broad spectrum poison, meaning ‐ that it can poison several different systems in the body, although the nervous system is most affected. The toxicity of H2S is comparable with that of hydrogen cyanide. It forms a complex bond with iron in the mitochondrial cytochrome enzymes, thereby blocking oxygen from binding and stopping cellular respiration.
(U//FOUO) Suicides involving hydrogen sulfide gas are increasing. Incidents have been reported in the Joint Regional Intelligence Center area of responsibility (JRIC AoR), most recently in Castaic, California on 23 February 2010. First responders should be aware of the indicators of hydrogen sulfide suicides, and should follow their agencies’ response and personal protection procedures to mitigate risk.
(U//FOUO) DHS/Office of Intelligence and Analysis (I&A) and the Los Angeles Joint Regional Intelligence Center (JRIC) assess that an intentional release of hydrogen sulfide gas most likely would be by a person using it to commit suicide, thus not exposing large numbers of people. The gas is, however, highly toxic and easy to produce from commonly available materials—properties that could make it attractive for use in a terrorist attack. DHS/I&A and JRIC have no information that terrorists are planning an attack in the United States using hydrogen sulfide gas.