2013-02-21 / Community

Meth materials warning for highway volunteers

MANISTIQUE – After receiving more than 12 inches of snowfall this week, the notion of spring may seem distant to some, but one sure sign of its impending arrival is the return of the Adopt- A-Highway program.

The program surfaced in a relatively short Schoolcraft County Board audit and finance committee meeting last Thursday. During the meeting, Chairman Al Grimm voiced concerns about debris left alongside highways by meth labs operated out of vehicles, and how this debris should be handled by volunteers.

“There has been a lot of talk about meth (methamphetamine) producers making it right out of their vehicles then throwing the stuff used to make it right out the window,” he said.

Grimm questioned whether any precautions or warnings were posted to direct Adopt-A-Highway volunteers on how to handle the material should they come across it. After discussing the issue, the board indicated they would work with local law enforcement and the media to educate the public on the issue.

Methamphetamine is a highly addictive stimulant that can be made using household chemicals and equipment and common cold remedies. Clean-up crews who come across materials used to make the drug could be burned, or have their lungs damaged from inhaling fumes.

Volunteers are cautioned to not remove unknown or suspected toxic substances. And to notify MDOT or local law enforcement of the location should they discover the following items:

-Empty bottles

-The smell of ammonia

-Coffee filters stained red or containing a white powder residue

-Garbage bags with cat litter

-Corroded propane tanks

-Empty or used alcohol products

-Numerous empty cold medicine and diet pill bottles or blister packs

-Unused matches without striker plates

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