CONCERNS have been raised after the car park outside of a GP surgery was littered with nitrous oxide canisters.

A concerned patient of Swan Lane Medical Centre noticed the small silver containers on Saturday and claims there are hundreds spread across the area.

The patient, who wishes to remain anonymous, called the drug use “quite disgusting, especially outside of a GP surgery.”

She also worries that the canisters themselves could be dangerous, causing people to slip or temporarily lose control of their cars.

The car park is owned by Bolton Council, and has capacity for 10 cars. The practice has a smaller, private car park for the 8,660 patients registered at the practice which opened in 1988.

Swan Lane Medical Centre did not wish to comment on the situation.

Nitrous Oxide, also known as ‘laughing gas’, has been a legally grey area for many years. Although the gas is banned for human consumption, it is still relatively easy to obtain cooking-grade versions of the product.

Nitrous Oxide is the 14th most commonly used drug according to the Global Drug Survey 2019. Use of the drug can be dangerous due to asphyxiation and extreme cold from the gas slowing the heart rate if the temperature affects the Vagus nerve at the back of the throat.

The canisters are made from galvanised steel, a fully recyclable material, but are not currently widely recycled due to the risks associated with the process.

When approached for comment, a spokesperson for Bolton Council said that incidents like this must be reported before action can be taken. Residents can contact the fly tipping team via an online form, or by emailing