Drug equipment delivery service
A same-day delivery website has launched in Bermuda, selling drug paraphernalia and detailing a potent new method of smoking cannabis.
Gita Blakeney Saltus, executive director of the Smith's-based addiction charity Pathways Bermuda, said she was taken aback at the “brazen” nature of the Vape Bermuda site (www.vapebermuda.com), which claims that “discretion and privacy for our customers is our main concern”.
The business — whose logo incorporates Bermuda's geographical outline — sells items priced at up to $250, including natural vaporisers, electronic vaporisers, hemp wick, bongs, grinders, smoking masks and scales. It promises to deliver all products in unmarked bags “so no one has to know what you are ordering, or who you are ordering from”, and payment can be made either online with a card or in person with cash.
This morning, its owners responded to The Royal Gazette's request for comment and insisted nothing they sell is illegal and everything is intended for use with tobacco or other legal herbs.
Section 9 of the Misuse of Drugs Act 1972 states: “No person shall have in his possession any pipe, equipment or apparatus fit and intended for use in connection with the misuse of a controlled drug or the preparation of any such drug for misuse.
“It is an offence for a person to have in his possession a pipe, equipment or apparatus.”
Today, the company argued this “refers to equipment that has actually been used with illegal substances, ie has residue etc”.
It stated that Vape Bermuda sells only brand new equipment, no different from a store front in Washington Mall.
“Our service is just better because we deliver, we have a wider variety of products, and our prices are on average 45 per cent less,” said the company.
The website also has a section dedicated to “dabbing” — which Livescience.com says allows users to inhale a more concentrated form of cannabis through the use of butane hash oil.
According to Theweedblog.com, the method emerged in recent years in the western United States, with one contributor claiming it “gets you really high, really fast”.
An embedded YouTube video at Vape Bermuda, titled “How to Dab”, features a man wearing a hoodie, surgical gloves and a ghost mask similar to that seen in the 1996 horror film Scream.
The man, whose voice has been altered to hide his identity, points out cannabis resin strains on a table such as Trainwreck Wax, Blueberry Express and Red Eye Jedi — as well as Moonrocks, which is considered one of the strongest existing forms of cannabis.
He explains how to “dab” through a bong, before heating the glass equipment and inhaling smoke for the camera.
Vape Bermuda has proven popular on Instagram. Using the handle @dabbermuda, it has more than 2,500 followers.
The majority of its posts on the social network site showcase items for sale, and contain hashtags such as #smokeweedeveryday, #potheads and #onlysmokethefinest.
Ms Blakeney Saltus expressed her surprise at the “in your face” approach of the Bermudian website.
“It's very disturbing and shocking that this exists. It's so brazen, in a way I've never seen,” she said. “I can't believe that this is in plain sight and someone's able to start a business around it.”
Vape Bermuda's website contains this disclaimer: “All of the products on this site are intended for use with tobacco or other legal herbs. Herbs such as eucalyptus, lavender, thyme, chamomile, lemon balm and sage for the purpose of aromatherapy.
“Some of our products are intended for use with only concentrated essential oils for intensified aromatherapy sessions. The products on this site are not to be used with illegal substances and Vape Bermuda does not encourage or condone such use.
“You must be 18 years of age to view this site. Please leave this website if you are under the age of 18. Vape Bermuda will not sell any products to anyone under the age of 18.”
The Royal Gazette contacted the Bermuda Police Service for comment, but did not receive a response by the time of going to press.
• This article was amended due to an error, in which Gita Blakeney Saltus was termed an addiction specialist. The Royal Gazette apologises to Ms Blakeney Saltus for the mistake.