5 Jan 2013

Tourists warned after drinks spiked with methanol

6:30 am on 5 January 2013

Tourists in Indonesia are being warned about the risk of drinks being spiked with methanol.

A 19-year-old Australian man is fighting for his life in a Perth hospital with methanol poisoning after New Year's Day drinks with friends on Lombok near Bali.

The chair of the Western Australia-based Indonesia Institute, Ross Taylor, says more methanol-based drinks are making their way onto the market in Indonesia because there is big money in it, the ABC reports.

"If you need to have an alcoholic drink, perhaps choose some of the local beers which are famous and very well known and cheap.

"But I would exercise very great caution about taking cocktails, spirit-based drinks."

Last year, prominent Perth rugby player Michael Denton died in Bali and an autopsy found the cause of death to be methanol poisoning.