Homebuyers, Beware of Buying a Former Meth Lab
Toxic residue and patchwork regulations a 'nationwide issue,' says DEA
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 27, 2012 1:24 PM CDT
In this file photo, examples of a items used in the production of methamphetamine sit on a table inside the Pratt County Sheriff office in Kansas.   (Getty Images)

(Newser) – Those in the market for a home may want to add this question to their checklist: Was this by any chance ever used as a meth lab? The idea may sound far-fetched, but Fox News has a few examples of horror stories in which unsuspecting families move into homes, get seriously sick, and only then discover what previously went on there:

  • “It came to us when we were tearing up the master bathroom, after the floor starting sinking and got spongy," says one man near Seattle. "That’s when we found the iodine-like staining on the walls and human feces under the floor.”

Police shut down more than 10,000 meth labs around the US last year, and some of those residential sites get returned to the housing market with only a superficial cleaning that does nothing to eliminate the toxic chemicals spewed. States such as Kentucky and Arkansas now have disclosure laws on the books, but about half the country isn't protected. A DEA spokeswoman calls the inconsistent regulations a "nationwide issue."
 

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