Meth House Hazards and Remediation Course

This thread is dedicated exclusively for those students currently enrolled in InterNACHI’s free, online Meth House Hazards and Remediation Course.

The goal of this course is to teach home inspectors about methamphetamine hazards in buildings to keep themselves and building occupants safe during a home inspection.

And, in keeping with InterNACHI’s commitment to Continuing Education, this course is open and free to all members, and can be taken again and again, without limit.

Students are free to pose questions and comments here and join in the conversation with other students. The thread will be monitored by the course instructor.

Contact: Director of Education, Ben Gromicko ben@internachi.org

Inspector training courses: www.nachi.org/education.

Thank you.

This should be interesting. Too many meth labs in Southwest Virginia.

Many here in california also.

i think i ran into one here lately

Just starting this course, should be as good as all the rest.

A stove hooked up in a garage is a sign of concern. one may be led to believe that it could have been used in the production of meth along with other signs of chemicals and trash that were present at the time of the inspection.

I haven’t had the pleasure of encountering a meth house or lab yet, but I work in rural areas and have been told they are out there. Will post any photos or experiences as they may occur.

Doug Bowman
Archer Inspections Ltd.

That’s not my signature…
Doug Bowman
Archer Inspections

The course has shown me what the signs are to look for if a home being inspected was or is a meth lab. Being able to recognize the odd smells and strange staining and colors associated with meth production and use could be helpful in those homes that are questionable. If and when I run across a house that seems a potential for meth contamination , it will now be easier to identify the signs.
Thanks

My area is known for labs. Have not come across one, yet, to be informed, to be prepared. Worthwhile information.

Al Rickard - All Points Inspections - Mold and Meth Samplers of Utah

I have been a certified meth contamination inspector for Several years - I also conduct training and CE courses on meth contamination. I am excited to gain further insight into the Meth relationship with home inspections.

I have been told by a Realtor in this area that they had entered a home with a strong cat urine smell and left right away with their client. I use infra-red as a normal part of all my inspections, the smell of cat urine is sometimes seen as a fresh, wet, dark-blue circle in the carpet. Clients love seeing infra-red photos in the report. The blue stained propane valve is good to know. It is also good to know how to avoid agitating a person on meth at any time.

A meth house may have appliances in unusual locations. Sometimes extra provisions for ventilation or cooling can cause suspicions. In this case the separate air handler in the garage was probably just used as additional cooling for a workshop as there was no other evidence of a meth lab here. An exhaust vent would have been more suspicious. Since most homes have been cleaned and prepped before an inspector arrives he should be on the look out for unusual installations. A house with two washing machines for instance (one could have been used to dispose of meth) or maybe the previous owners ran a laundry service (who knows). Exhaust vents in the garage, extra laundry tubs, another fully functional stove in an unusual location, additional filtration on AC units, amateur or makeshift electrical or plumbing connections if coupled with other evidence like corrosion, phosphorus or iodine stains may give the inspector cause to further evaluate with testing if he is qualified. The national clandestine lab registry is a good place to check. Find it here http://www.dea.gov/clan-lab/clan-lab.shtml .

I am only one of two companies in Northeast Pa which is doing meth testing and remediation. I have Hazmat training and I took my certification course from Meth Lab LLC in New York.

Looking forward to working through this as I recover from kidney surgery in Missouri, where meth production is a significant piece of the landscape.

Interesting course which breaks up the normal course materials a bit. After the first news video I was expecting to see some episodes of COPS thrown in for real world examples. Also interesting that they have to be specific about if certain things can be kept, who would even consider wanting to keep a mattress that was in a Meth house, throw it all out!

To round out the course I figured I would read the article about Meth Labs
by Nick Gromicko. It is basically a real good summary of items covered in the course. Would be a good article to share with any clients that had concerns about a Meth house.**
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HVAC ductwork may transfer Meth contamination throughout a house, as well as a multiple family dwelling. The HVAC system should be shut down during remediation. The ductwork should be evaluated and cleaned or replaced as necessary.

Building Cavities Used as Supply or Return Ducts helps the inspector be aware of a variety of possible situations to be encountered during Meth evaluation. Ductwork should be evaluated and cleaned or replaced if found to be contaminated. The potential of contamination within the floor joist system could be particularly troubling.

Meth Labs gives the inspector a basic introduction to this topic. The article contains some startling facts about the Meth problem in the US. It provides a general overview of things to be aware of, and what one should do if a Meth problem is suspected.

I feel I will learn a lot from this course. Can’t wait to get to it :smiley:

When performing an inspection on a suspected meth house, it is imperative that a Chain of Custody is followed at all times as it relates to samples that are taken. Always ensure that the least amount of people possible come into contact with the samples, that the samples are collected in a uniform manner, that chances of cross-contamination are reduced or eliminated by all means possible (eg new pair of gloves for each sample), and that the samples contain at least one blank for control purposes that is collected in the same fashion, but without actually wiping. Be consistent with solvent use. Isopropyl alcohol is the most consistent medium to use.

Samples should be locked up in a lockable storage container until delivered or sent to the lab for analysis. Finally - document, document, document.

Great course. Very enlightening and informative.