Updated: Jun 27
First lets clarify. Pepper Spray (oleoresin capsicum) is not mace. Mace is a pain compliant chemical which means the person you spray must sub come to the pain in order to be compliant. This was the product of choice by almost all law enforcement officers up to 1975. In 1975 the FBI adopted Pepper Spray over mace. The main reason for this change was through the late 1960's and early 1970's the drugs of choice were hallucinogens such as LSD,mescaline, ecstasy, ketamine, and others. A person could be so mentally impaired that Mace would have little or no effect on them. Pepper Spray solved that problem because it can be effective on people under the influence of drugs and alcohol and is even effective on dogs and coyotes.
Pepper Spray (Oleoresin capsicum) is a non lethal irritant and is made from the oily extract of the cayenne pepper plant. When sprayed in the face for 1/2 second causes three things to happen.
1.The effect of pepper spray on the eyes will be immediate, triggering uncontrollable tearing, involuntary closing of the eyelids, redness, swelling, stinging and temporary blindness. The epithelial layer of the cornea is disrupted by pepper spray. When this happens the brain takes a snapshot of where the person spraying the pepper spray is located. Which is why I teach a half circle move after deploying pepper spray.
2. The second thing that occurs is an irritation of the mucous membranes of the upper respiratory tract which give the person who was sprayed the sensation of not being able to breath when in fact they can. This can create a Psychological effect of fear, panic, disorientation, and or a physiological effect of hyperventilation.
3.The third thing that occurs is the pain or burning sensation they feel depending on the Scoville Heat Units. Industry standard is 2 million Scoville Heat Units. To put that in prospective a Jalapino Pepper is 5000 Scoville Heat Units.
Being able to protect yourself from a threat at distance is a key component in winning a violent or threatening action against you. Pepper Spray effective range varies from 12 feet to 25 feet and allow multiple 1 second burst to protect yourself from multiple attackers.
Pepper Spray is legal in all 50 states for adults 18 years of age and older. In Massachusetts minors 15 to 17 years old may carry and use pepper spray with a Firearms Identification Card (FID)
Formal training is not required by law to purchase and carry Pepper Spray it is highly recommended for all ages. You can see our Pepper Spray Classes and purchase Pepper Spray at www.safetyacademyusa.com