Protecting Home Buyers
Side Effects of Meth Residue
Hazard and Building Inspections Adelaide are passionate about protecting families from the detrimental health effects and financial consequences of meth contamination. Offering a comprehensive range of meth testing from basic screening to in-depth analysis we’ve got all your meth testing needs covered.
Whilst meth contamination is a huge hidden problem in Adelaide and across Australia, slowly but surely the facts are coming out and there is more and more legislation being passed to ensure homes are tested for meth contamination.
Many people have never even heard about meth testing nor would they know about the real health risks associated with living in a home with meth contamination.
With the growing epidemic of Meth (also known as crystal meth or ‘Ice’) users in Australia there is an increasing number of Australian homes that are contaminated with toxic residues which gets left behind when people smoke or ‘cook’ meth. These toxic residues can wreak havoc with your health and give you the same symptoms experienced by ice/meth users. As residues are invisible there is no way to see if a home is contaminated without a screening test.
Every time a user smokes meth it creates an array of toxic airborne contaminants that build up to create an invisible residue on the walls, floors, carpets, curtains and furniture. If you buy a home from a meth user, then there is a big chance of contamination and if that house has been used as a ‘Meth Lab’ then it is likely to be heavily contaminated and pose a significant risk to the health of its occupants.
Meth residues are readily absorbed into the body through the skin. Just by coming into contact with a contaminated surface eg walls, floors, carpets, curtains etc the residue can be transferred to the skin and absorbed into the body. Babies and children are most at risk because they often play, crawl and watch TV whilst on the floor and regularly brush up against walls.
Tests carried out on children who had never used the drug but who lived in meth contaminated homes showed the children had meth levels in their system equivalent to a low-level Adult Ice user.
Even if the meth use was contained to one room in the home, the residue can be trafficked around the rest of the home on the shoes or feet.
Not everyone reacts to meth contamination in the same way, and the severity of the reaction will depend on the level and length of time of the exposure. However, typical symptoms of contamination are
Sleep disturbances and insomnia
Behavioural issues in kids
Skin and eye irritations that can result in rashes over the body
Not only is meth contamination a serious health risk but it has serious financial consequences too. Residue cannot be washed off the walls with water, specialist chemicals and decontamination equipment is needed and this can cost between $5,000 to $25,000 for a basic clean up. However, if the house has been used as a lab and is heavily contaminated, the clean-up costs could be anywhere from $25,000 to $150,000+ and in extreme cases may involve demolishing the entire home. Homes that have been used as a meth lab are undesirable and sell for a fraction of the price of a standard home.
How likely is
it that a House
One of the most disturbing things about meth contamination is that it can be found in any home from units, townhouses, executive homes or luxury homes. Meth users can be from any social background or amongst any age group, the only way to know for sure is to do a screening test.
Stats from the 2016 National Drug Strategy Household Survey found that ‘6.3% or 1.3 million Australians over the age of 14 had used methamphetamine (including ice, speed or base) and 1.4% reported recent use (in the past 12 months).’
It’s always better to be safe than sorry, so just to be certain there are no hidden risks we would recommend that all homes are meth tested prior to purchase. However, if you are looking to buy a home that has been used as a rental property, either as a long-term rental or short-term rental you should definitely undertake a screening test for peace of mind. Over 60% of the clandestine drug labs found by police have been using rental properties as a drug lab. What’s more, many short-term weekend/holiday rentals may also be at risk of attracting drug users particularly as these types of rentals have limited or no screening of potential occupants.
Let us put your Mind at Rest
Hazard and Building Inspections have had first-hand experience of the consequences and dangers of meth contamination with a family member being a recovering addict. As such we are absolutely passionate about informing people of the risks of buying a meth contaminated home and preventing the frustration, heartache and financial stress that people go through after discovering their home may be the cause of their health issues. Instant meth screening tests costs from as little as $50 when combined with a building inspection, so you need not become an innocent victim of someone else’s drug use.
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