Crystal meth is one of the most toxic and addictive drugs on the streets and back roads of Alabama. Its physical affects on adults include malnutrition, paranoia, and susceptibility to disease. A high lasts more than eight hours leaving the addict wanting more.
Children of meth lab producers and abusers pay a high price for their parent's addiction. Children who live with parents at a meth lab site face acute health and safety risks including physical, emotional and sexual abuse. A child living in a clandestine lab is exposed to chemical contamination, fires and explosions.
In 2005, the Alabama legislature made it harder to purchase the main ingredient of the drug. Since then, meth lab producers have been busy developing a new, simpler, one-pot way of producing the drug.
The new method of it is called 'Shake and Bake' on the streets. Drain opener, liquid fire, salt and other ingredients are mixed in a container, turned upside down to mix up the chemicals to cause a reaction. It's a reaction that can cause an explosion.
If a meth addict is high and forgets to let the bottle 'breathe' it becomes a time bomb waiting to go off. For a child who touches one of these pressurized bottles, it could mean severe burns or death.
Law enforcement officers are also concerned about the safety of their investigators as well as the general public. They are urging their officers to handle the bottles carefully and asking anyone who might see a bottle on the side of the road to avoid it and call for help.
A Stop Meth tip line has been set up. If you suspect anyone is using methamphetamines and especially if you believe children are being endangered, call 866-303-METH.