THE so-called zombie drug spice has been described as the “most severe public health issue we have faced in decades” by police elsewhere in the country.

To hear of respected GP Tim Worthley talking about it should be a trigger for action as his knowledge of the dangers on our streets is always to be trusted.

There is a danger here because, like LSD in the early 1990s, it is so cheap. It can be bought for less than a four pack of lager.

Spice, which is designed to mimic the effects of cannabis, can have severe debilitating effects and can leave users in a zombie-like state.

Users are increasingly seen slumped on the streets in a state of semi-consciousness, often passed out, sometimes aggressive and always highly unpredictable – it has been warned.

But it is not cannabis – it is even worse.

A police chief in Lincolnshire once said that the wide-scale abuse of these debilitating drugs within towns, cities and even villages across the UK is one of the most severe public health issue we have faced in decades, and presently the response to tackle the issue is woefully inadequate.

People who got hooked on spice have said it is so bad it has turned them into such zombies – and they have turned to heroin to try to get off it.

That says it all.

If those who use it are young, homeless or on a night out the message is clear – stay away from it before it takes over your life.

And more can be done to protect people from it.

One thing that could be done is making it Class A, as police chiefs have called for. What are we waiting for?