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Methamphetamine: The Problems, The Drug

What exactly is Methamphetamine?Types of Methamphetamine
  • Levo or L-Methamphetamine
  • Dextro/Levo or D/L-Methamphetamine
  • Dextro or D-Methamphetamine
Effects of Methamphetamine
  • Elevated Pulse (Beyond 100 bpm)
  • Elevated Blood Pressure
  • Elevated Body Temperature
  • Possibly dilated pupils
  • Irritability
  • Nervousness, Hyperactive
  • Aggressiveness, Potentially Violent
  • Body Tremors
  • Distinct odor
  • Poor Hygiene
  • Tooth Rot, Dark coloring around gums
  • Pale, Unhealthy appearance
  • Short Attention Span
  • Rapid Speech, Broken speech patterns
  • Burn marks on fingers
  • Severe Acne on skin 'Meth bugs'
Is Methamphetamine replacing Crack Cocaine?
  • More potent drug, (Lasts much longer than cocaine) the duration of cocaine is only 60-90 minutes. Methamphetamine can last up to 36 hours.
  • Cost - depending on where the user lives in the USA, the cost of methamphetamine is about the same as cocaine, generally around $80.00-$100.00 per gram.
  • Availability - Methamphetamine can be made within a few short hours. Having a recipe, which can be downloaded off the Internet and around $60.00 worth of easily purchased chemicals, can produce one ounce of methamphetamine. One ounce of methamphetamine can sell for $1,200.00 on the streets. With a large demand, the lure of easy, fast money brings many to the challenge of manufacturing and selling. With large-scale labs producing several hundred pounds of methamphetamine at a time, and the increase of local smaller labs, methamphetamine is very easy to get if the user wants it.
  • Effects of D-methamphetamine - the users when first introduced to the drug, experience an intense rush that can last up to 30 minutes. The rush and high is much longer and more intense than cocaine.
DownsideClandestine Laboratory Safety Issues
  • Explosive/Flammability - many of the reagents and solvents that are used are not only flammable but also explosive.
  • Toxicity - Many of the chemicals used in the manufacturing process are extremely toxic. Some of which produce an immediate threat and some that have a delayed effect. If exposed the unknowing receiver, may not notice the failure of certain vital organs for several years. THIS CAN HAPPEN BY SHORT, SINGLE, EXPOSURE!
  • Acids and Caustic ingredients - many of the chemicals used in the manufacturing process can cause severe burns to the skin, lungs, and eyes.
  • Safety Training, Equipment and an operation plan to deal with these situations. Recruiting assistance with children exposed, and contaminated residences. Do we have decontamination procedures, for not only law enforcement, but also the suspects that are arrested and transported to jail? Property landlords who do not provide remediation of their exposed residence properly add to the problem. The obvious problem here is the unsuspecting person who rents the property that used to contain a meth-lab, who is involuntarily exposed to the hazardous chemicals. This raises several questions, such as WHO is going to make sure that these outlying concerns are being followed up on? WHAT is our responsibility as a Law Enforcement entity with these issues?

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