Indoor Air Quality Solutions Blog

"Healthier Air Starts Here" (407) 383-9459

Indoor Air Quality IAQ Blog

Meth in Florida: A growing problem both statewide and locally

Florida Meth Lab - Florida Indoor Air Quality Solutions, IAQBy SHELDON GARDNER
Sunday, April 7, 2013

Methamphetamine use is growing across Florida, and that trend is reflected in St. Johns County where the number of meth busts has increased for the past few years.
St. Johns County’s first meth bust came in the 1970s, and meth labs weren’t discovered regularly again until the early 2000s, according to previous stories.
Deputies started finding a few meth labs a year in 2008, said St. Johns County Sheriff’s Cpl. Mike Hartsell. In 2011 and 2012, the Sheriff’s Office found more than three dozen meth labs.
“It’s not gonna slow down,” Hartsell said.
Meth labs have been found across the county in hotel rooms, homes, backpacks and cars. Many of them are clustered in and around the city limits, but labs have also been found in Hastings, Elkton, Ponte Vedra Beach and off County Road 210 and 208, according to Sheriff’s Office records.
Most of them are small-scale, one pot labs, that are highly mobile and produce enough meth for personal use.
The same is true statewide. Most labs fit in a Gatorade bottle, small enough so that someone could “start making meth in one county and drive through three counties before it’s done,” said David Gross, special agent supervisor with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, which monitors trends in drug use.
The increase in meth lab discoveries is also happening across the state, but meth is already a nationwide problem, Gross said. Meth has been in Florida since the late 80s or early 90s, but use and production started to pick up in 2008.
In 2008, law enforcement agencies across the state reported 180 meth labs, Gross said. That number rose steadily. In 2011, 676 meth labs were found. There were probably more since multiple areas in the state did not file reports. Reporting is on a voluntary basis.
In 2012, 930 meth labs were reported statewide.
In May 2011, the St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office Clandestine Laboratory Enforcement Team formed to better respond to the growing problem. The team is made up of deputies trained in handling meth labs. Hartsell supervises one of those teams.
When the Sheriff’s Office meth team arrives at a scene, officials suit up and remove the lab from the home. That takes four to six hours and costs from $500 to $2,000 depending on the size of the lab, Hartsell said.
Meth cooks endanger not only the people cooking them, but surrounding communities. The gases used in the cook are toxic and highly flammable and explosive. In 2010, a Sheriff’s deputy had to be taken to the hospital for an inhalation injury after breathing in the toxic fumes during an investigation, Hartsell said.
Meth use also increases criminal activity, affects surrounding communities and costs the county money. As with other drugs, people often steal to support their habit, Hartsell said.
Meth labs are toxic to people and homes.
Cooking meth or smoking it creates gases that seep into walls, carpets and furniture, he said. If a building is not cleaned properly, the residual gases are still there, and it’s a health risk.
Depending on the extent of meth use, decontaminating a building could mean ripping out walls and throwing away furniture, costing thousands to tens of thousands of dollars. Sometimes houses are so badly contaminated that they need to be demolished.
St. Johns County Code Enforcement officials recently demolished a mobile home at 1990 Powell Road because meth had been cooked in the home. Two labs had been found there over the past few years. The property owner opted to have the building torn down instead of paying for the clean-up.
Officials said meth use will continue to be a problem in the state and the county despite efforts to fight its spread.
“Right now that’s the future of narcotics in our county,” Hartsell said. “At least for the time being.”

A few facts about meth
Methamphetamine facts from the Drug Enforcement Administration:
Street names: Batu, Bikers Coffee, Black Beauties, Chalk, Chicken Feed, Crank, Crystal, Glass, Go-Fast, Hiropon, Ice, Meth, Methlies Quick, Poor Man’s Cocaine, Shabu, Shards, Speed, Stove Top, Tina, Trash, Tweak, Uppers, Ventana, Vidrio, Yaba and Yellow BamLooks.
■ How it’s done: Meth can be swallowed, snorted, injected or smoked.
■ Affects: Meth creates an intense rush with highs that can last for half a day. The drug releases high levels of dompamine into the pleasure areas of the brain. Long-term abuse can cause addiction, violence, anxiety, confusion, insomnia, paranoia, hallucinations, delusions. Dopamine-producing brain cells and serotonin-containing nerve cells can be damaged by exposure to meth.
■ Overdose: Taking too much meth can cause a heart attack, stroke and multiple organ problems as the body temperature is raised to dangerous levels. Overdosing also can cause convulsions.
■ Legal: Meth is a Schedule II controlled substance and is prescribed, in very limited use, to treat obesity and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.
■ Where it all started: Mexico produces most of the meth that is imported into cities in the US. Many meth labs found in the U.S. are small scale labs.
■ What’s been done: The Combat Methamphetamine Epidemic Act of 2005 requires businesses that sell non-prescription products that contain major ingredients in meth — pseudoephedrine, ephedrine or phenylpropanolamine — to make customers show ID and sign a logbook to purchase the products. They must also keep the products in a locked cabinet.
■ Florida has its own laws regarding the sale and purchase of ephedrine and its related compounds. The State Legislature passed a law in 2010 that controls the sale and purchase of the chemical, and created an electronic database for sellers and law enforcement to keep track of who is buying and selling, according to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.


Add a Comment

(Enter the numbers shown in the above image)

Follow jlapotaire on Twitter

Review on

[Valid RSS]
Add this Content to Your Site

Latest Top (12) News

EPISODE495 - Sal La Duca - Environmental Assay, Inc.
This week we are bringing back Sal La Duca for part 2 of our discussion on electricity, EMF's & IEQ. Electricity and electric fields are all around us we keep adding them yet we do not know much about how they affect the health of occupants or if they affect health. Is it possible that they have affects we don't understand? We do know that when installed improperly electric systems can cause a variety of issues. We also know how to find improper installations and to how to reduce the potential for exposure. In Part 1 Mr. La Duca walked us through the basics from the generating facility to the wiring in our home. Part 2 will focus on how to evaluate the issues and what equipment is used to help determine if we have issues.

Fri, 23 Feb 2018 15:00:00 -0500

EPISODE494 - Ralph Moon, PhD Michael Bowdoin, Esq
This week we will be finishing up our hurricane coverage series with two gentlemen that are known for seeing the big picture. Dr. Ralph Moon is based in the Tampa, FL region and Attorney Michael Bowdoinâ??s practice is in the Houston, TX area. Both have extensive personal and professional experience dealing with the aftermath of the hurricanes that hit in 2017. Both also work closely with contractors, consultants, building owners, insurance adjusters and others that have been trying to bring things back to normal. We plan a wide ranging discussion of what happened, how the response was handled and how these events will affect our future dealing with large natural disasters.

Fri, 16 Feb 2018 14:22:00 -0500


Fri, 02 Feb 2018 15:11:00 -0500

EPISODE492 - Radio Joe Reports - Sloan Research to Practice Kickoff & IAQA
Radio Joe is on the road at the IAQA Annual Meeting and last week attended a Sloan Workshop: Roadmap Research to Practice. Radio Joe will be reporting on both events this week and we will debut our new format for the show. The Sloan workshop was put together by Richard Shaughnessy, PhD and Jordan Peccia, PhD. It was a fascinating meeting of about 15 practitioners, 15 researchers and a handful of government representatives from agencies such as EPA, HUD and CDC. It was designed to allow practitioners to let researchers know what we need from research to do a better job helping people live in better indoor environments. This workshop focused on the Microbiome of the Built Environment and included a lot of discussion on mold and water damage topics. Radio Joe will review the presentations by both researchers and practitioners to bring listeners up to speed on what was discussed. The IAQA Annual Meeting is always a highlight of the conference season. This year it was in Chicago and was in conjunction with the ASHRAE AHR Expo. As always there was a huge expo hall with thousands of exhibitors and some excellent presentations at the Hilton Chicago.

Fri, 26 Jan 2018 12:08:49 -0500

Radio Joe is on the road at a Sloan "Research to Practice" Conference and will be back live next Friday to report on the event and the IAQA Conference. This week we are playing back a great show with a guest we tried to get for a long time. Tiina Reponen, PhD is a Professor in the Department of Environmental Health, College of Medicine at the University of Cincinnati. As an expert in indoor allergens and mold, she served as the principal investigator in several major laboratory and field experiments on airborne allergens, bacteria and fungi and has directed exposure assessment teams in population-based studies. Dr. Reponen is the Director of the NIOSH-funded University of Cincinnati Education and Research Center (ERC), which includes graduate programs related to occupational health from three colleges: Medicine, Nursing and Applied Science and Engineering. She is currently directing two cohort studies. One is focused on the association between indoor bioaerosol exposures and the development of children's allergy and asthma and the other is focused on the effects of green renovation on indoor air quality and occupants' health.

Fri, 19 Jan 2018 12:00:03 -0500

EPISODE490 - Tony Havics, PE, CIH - Occupational Exposure Limits and Their
This week on IAQ Radio we welcome Anthony "Tony" Havics to talk about how occupational exposure limits are related to limits for the general public. This is a topic that causes a lot of confusion and at times misinformation. Can we use OEL's or should we avoid them altogether? Join us and LEARN MORE on IAQ Radio! Mr. Havics is an Honors graduate from Georgia Institute of Technology with a Bachelor's Degree in Mechanical Engineering and is a registered Professional Environmental Engineer (PE) with over 25 years of experience. He has provided front end investigation, development of plans & specifications, development of work plans, cost estimation, and oversight of numerous facilities for remediation, refurbishing, or decommissioning including a launch pad, dam gates, a baseball stadium, a tire factory with 59 buildings, a biologically contaminated L1011, a hospital, JP-6 fuel tanks, former mental institute, former military buildings, etc. In the field of microscopy, he has performed analysis for asbestos, contaminants in products, other minerals, fibers, fungi, engineering properties, and has testified in federal court as an expert microscopist. Andrew has also performed failure analysis and forensic testing on numerous building products such as roofs, windows, flooring, drywall, piping, etc.

Fri, 12 Jan 2018 12:00:09 -0500

EPISODE489 - Bruce White IAQA First VP Wildfires and IAQ!
This week on IAQ Radio we welcome Mr. Bruce White, Vice President at American Environmental Specialists & IAQA First Vice President. Mr. White's and his company provide IAQ and environmental consulting on a wide range of issues from their Southern California office. We will discuss wildfires and IAQ, Hospital Construction Monitoring, The new OSHA Silica Rule and Mechanical Systems and IAQ. Bruce brings a unique perspective to his consulting, he has been in the environmental business for over 30 years with a wide range of experience in the real world. He started out in the restoration industry and was also part of the early days of asbestos abatement and other types of environmental contracting. From there he has spent almost 20 years as an environmental consultant with a stint working for a large distributor of environmental safety supplies and equipment. He also has a long history of volunteering for industry related associations and is currently the First Vice President of the Indoor Air Quality Association (IAQA). Bruce has numerous tips and techniques to share with listeners and will also share his insights on the future of our industry. LEARN MORE this week on IAQ Radio!

Fri, 05 Jan 2018 12:00:12 -0500

EPISODE488 - Ken Larsen & Mickey Lee - Water Damage Scope of Work..
This week on IAQ Radio we welcome Ken Larsen and Mickey Lee back to the show to continue our hurricane coverage and to discuss tips for how to develop proper scopes of work on water damage restoration projects. Both pros are working in the areas damaged by Hurricane Irma and both are long time water damage restoration pros, contributors to industry standards and instructors. Ken Larsen, CR, WLS, CSDS has been in the restoration industry since 1978. He holds RIA, ACAC and IICRC advanced designations. His career includes 18 years as an independent property restoration contractor, consultant to restorative drying during catastrophes and large loss drying coordination, expert witness, Director of Education for North America's largest disaster restoration contracting organization, and now the author of one of the industry's leading technical resource books on the subject of structural restorative drying - Leadership in Restorative Drying. He is currently an IICRC Approved instructor of WRT, ASD and CDS certificate courses. He is also an RIA instructor of the restoration industry's advanced certification credentials: Water Loss Specialist (WLS) and Certified Restorer (CR). He serves as Chairman for RIA approved Instructors, Trainers and Subject Matter Experts, a sub-committee of RIA's Education Committee. Larsen presently serves as Senior Technical Director for the International Dry Standard Organization (IDSO) and Director of Education for the Restoration Leadership Institute (RLI) and lead consultant for the Restoration Expert Panel (REP). Ken lives with his wife Barbie (yes - really!) in Santa Rosa Beach in Northwest Florida. He can be contacted at ken at drystandard dot org. Mickey Lee is currently a private consultant providing consulting, training, research and writing services in the fields of property damage restoration, psychrometrics, drying science, mold remediation and structural drying after water intrusions. Mr. Lee retired from the Munters Corp (US) in 2011 after serving in various roles for over 20 years. At various points Mr. Lee was Vice-President - Global Technology & Sustainability for Munters AB - MCS and Global and National Technical & Training Manager for Munters Corp (US). He was responsible for training program development, curriculum writing and course facilitation in addition to managing projects for structural drying and restoration of commercial buildings of every type. He also has extensive experience in application of air treatment technology in restorative drying projects, corrosion-control methods, mold mitigation and humidity control in commercial and industrial facilities while working with Munters Corporation - Moisture Control Services Division. Recognizing his vast experience in water damage restoration the IICRC asked him to lead the development of their Commercial Drying Specialist certification. This program completed its' full roll-out in 2009 and continues to be a popular offering. Mr. Lee continues to serve as committee chair for the Commercial Drying Specialist Certification program and also serves on the IICRC S500 Standard and Reference Guide for Professional Water Damage Restoration revision committee.

Fri, 15 Dec 2017 12:00:11 -0500

EPIS. 487 -Mark Springer, Phil Rosebrook, Jr., Pete Consigli -RIA TPA Conf.
This week on IAQ Radio we discuss a topic that gets blood pressure up among some in the restoration world. Third Party Administrators TPAs are a fact of life today in many industries and RIA has been helping their members make the adjustments necessary. This week we welcome two widely respected restoration professionals to IAQ Radio. Mark Springer and Phill Rosebrook are both RIA members and were speakers at the recent RIA Strictly TPAs Fall Conference. We look forward to having them join us along with frequent contributor Pete Consigl. Mark Springer If you know Mark Springer, you probably know when the platitude, How are you doing? comes up in conversation, his likely answer is, Living the dream! Thats because its true. Mark has been married to his high school sweetheart, Angie for 20 years and they have been blessed with five beautiful daughters who, fortunately for Mark, take after their mother. Living in Montana accentuates the dream as he is able to pursue doing things he loves like downhill skiing, bow hunting, competitive shooting, and the mountains in general. Its not all hobbies though, Mark also gets to work all over the great state of Montana helping people who have experienced disasters, primarily from fires and floods. He is the President of Dayspring Restoration, a company that specializes in disaster restoration. Dayspring has 6 locations and about 100 team members. Mark has become a mini, (emphasis on �¢??mini�¢??) celebrity in Montana due to several television advertising campaigns where he flooded and burned his house and then demonstrated to the community the restoration process, (these videos can be viewed at Giving back to his community and his industry has always been a priority for Mark as he serves on numerous non-profit and trade association committees and boards Phillip Rosebrook Jr., Cr. Phillip is a graduate of the University of Oregons Lundquist School of Business. He worked his way through college in the family restoration business. He filled most all roles in the company including working on the cleaning crew, carpet cleaning, water damage emergency services, and other various restoration and construction related services. He ran the retail and wholesale carpet cleaning division managing several employees and coordinating the installation crews. After college Phillip managed the water damage division and scheduled all company production crews. He managed the branch office in Coos Bay, Oregon and served the Southern Oregon Coast region. The office was in a very rural area of the state with a small population yet the office grew from $300,000 in annual sales to over $1,000,000 under his management. In managing this office he filled every role from Estimator to Marketing Manager. After training the new Manager Phillip returned to the main office with oversight of all branch offices. He served as the Education Committee representative for the Western Chapter of Disaster Kleenup International. In 1997 when the company sold, Phillip moved to Fort Collins, Colorado to assist in opening a new office for Rocky Mountain Catastrophe. He was in charge of training the new manager, developing the marketing campaign, implementing systems and procedures and training the water damage and cleaning staff. The office quickly grew to over $300,000 in monthly sales. Phillip joined his father as a Partner in Business Mentors in March of 1998. He specializes in implementing change in restoration companies. He works with the individual managers, key employees and sometimes even the field staff to implement new systems and procedures. He developed the Operations Manual and Personnel Manual that is utilized in all of Business Mentors consulting. He is a frequent presenter at industry conferences, contributing author to the WLI course book and has authored many articles in Cleaning and Restoration magazine. Phillip is the founding partner of ELC Training a training resource for restoration companies. He is also a faculty member of the Restoration Leadership Institute. Phillip is the father of four children and has been married to Deanna since 2000. He enjoys gardening, hiking, and cycling. Phil lives in Portland, Oregon.

Fri, 08 Dec 2017 12:00:02 -0500

EPISODE486 - Sal La Duca - Principle Environmental Assay, Inc.
This week on IAQ Radio we are going to talk about an IEQ issue we do not hear a lot about, electricity and electromagnetic frequencies (EMF's). EMF's and other issues related to electrical currents are increasingly part of our indoor environment, we keep adding them yet we do not know much about how they affect the health of occupants or if they affect health. Is it possible that they have affects we don't understand? We do know that when installed improperly electric systems can cause a variety of issues. We also know how to find improper installations and to how to reduce the potential for exposure. Sal will walk us through the issue in layman's terms and give us ideas on how to find and fix issues. LEARN MORE this week on IAQ Radio! Sal La Duca is an Environmental Consultant specializing in the built environment, with over 40 years' experience in instrumentation and controls. Mr. La Duca started out as a Nuclear Reactor Operator / Reactor Technician (Instrumentation and Control Technician - Nuclear) on the USS Mississippi . After discharge, he was offered employment by Jersey Central Power and Light to help built a Radiological Survey instrument repair facility at their Oyster Creek Nuclear Power Plant in Forked River, NJ. From there he migrated to the Communications department, where he performed installation, calibration, and repairs of various generations of remote-control supervisory equipment for power system control. In 1994 he incorporated and began offering Electromagnetic Field services to clients. In 1999 he sought and acquired additional training with the Institute of Building Biology and Ecology, and expanded service offerings to include Indoor Air Quality. Since then he has added IAQ certifications through IAQA and ACAC. Most importantly he has real world experience on residential, commercial and industrial projects and takes a practical approach to the topic. LEARN MORE this week on IAQ Radio!

Fri, 01 Dec 2017 12:00:22 -0500

EPISODE485- Nate Adams, Carl Grimes & Eric Shapiro
This week on IAQ Radio we are going to discuss what we learned at the Healthy Buildings Summit 2017 at Seven Springs Resort with three industry pros that were in attendance. For those that could not attend we will go over some of the key presentations from the event and discuss how it affects IAQ, disaster restoration, home performance and other industry professionals. Nate Adams is the founder of Energy Smart Home Performance outside Cleveland Ohio. Energy Smart started out as an insulation contractor for existing homes, but has evolved into doing Comprehensive Home Performance retrofits. Carl Grimes, HHS CIEC, has consulted with people who have questions or issues with the indoor environment since 1987 as President of Healthy Habitats LLC in Denver, CO. Carl is a frequent presenter nationally and internationally, past President of IAQA, and past Vice President of Practice of ISIAQ. He is the current Managing Director of the Hayward Healthy Home Institute in Carmel, CA, and the Hayward Score Director of Healthy Homes. Eric Shapiro has extensive experience in Building Maintenance and Environmental Remediation. He also has a Master Degree in Forensic Psychology from the John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York City. Mr. Shapiro has extensive training and education in IAQ Investigations, Remediation, Diagnostics, Building Science and Moisture Control. He is also an instructor for an IAQA approved training provider and has helped hundreds of people prepare for various American Council for Accredited Certification ACAC certifications. He is a nationally recognized lecturer and trainer in Microbial Remediation, Inspections, Diagnostics, and Air Duct Cleaning. He is also experienced in training IAQA approved Indoor Environmentalist training programs and the National Center for Helthy Housing Home Health Specialist training.

Fri, 17 Nov 2017 12:00:13 -0500

EPISODE484 - Joseph P. Nagan Home Building Technology Services of Kaukau
This week on IAQ Radio we welcome Joe Nagan of Home Building Technology Services of Kauhauna, Wisconsin. Since 1985 Joe has been involved in residential building science research in both the US and Canada and has been very active in State wide conservation efforts in Wisconsin. Working with the Wisconsin Energy Conservation Corporation of Madison, he helped co-author the nationally recognized Wisconsin ENERGY STAR® Homes program where he served as Technical Director. This program certified 16,502 homes during its 11 year run. In addition to involvement with Energy Star Homes he worked with the administrator of the Statewide Focus On Energy® programs to co-author a new construction program, known as "Focus on Energy New Homes", which was launched in January 2011 and is currently in effect having now certified over 25,000 new homes collectively. Mr. Nagan is the go to guy when it comes to residential building science in Wisconsin. He has been involved in the energy efficiency and building trades since the early days of the first energy crisis and continues to be recognized as a leader in the world of building science. Join us today and LEARN MORE about how things have changed over the years, what works, what doesn't and where we go from here on IAQ Radio!

Fri, 10 Nov 2017 12:00:23 -0500
Follow Microshields IAQ News and Headlines Bloglines RSS Feed

Subscribe with Bloglines


IAQ News and Articles

Latest Top (10) News