While it’s commonly known the use of methamphetamine, a highly addictive and insidious illegal drug, is a drain on the health care system and a difficult war for health care professionals and law enforcement to win, there is another battle brewing that affects innocent people who inadvertently move into a property that was once used as a meth lab. Crystal meth is an extremely addicting drug, and has been known as one of the most dangerous street drugs due to its tendency to induce violent behaviour and its long-lasting effects.
The cooking process or even smoking methamphetamine releases toxic residue that permeates into porous surfaces in the property including carpet, floors, walls and even the timber frames. Some properties are so badly contaminated they have to be demolished.
New homeowners and renters are moving into properties without being aware it was once a meth lab. The Australia Crime Commission reported 744 clandestine meth lab busts in Australia last year. Despite governments meth lab remediation guidelines stating methamphetamine contaminated properties seized by police must be reported to local councils and should be listed on the contaminated land register, in many cases these reports and action plans are not being followed through by councils.
Australia’s ice epidemic causes heartache not only for users and their families, but also the innocent people who inadvertently move into homes once used as illegal drug labs | Sue Smethurst
Speaking in-depth about the dangers of living in a property once used as a meth lab, Josh Marsden, managing director of Meth Lab Cleaners Australia stated “soon cleaning up meth labs will be as common as pest control.. There’s no way I’d buy a house or rent a house in Australia without testing for meth first”.
Read more online at the Australia Women’s Weekly here.