Wednesday, October 22, 2014 Headlines & Global News

Meth Lab Cleanup Business A Growing Industry

By Bianca Facchinei b.facchinei@hngn.com | Dec 27, 2013 01:05 PM EST

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AMC's "Breaking Bad" gained an enormous cult following during its successful 5-season run. (Photo : AMC)

The cleaning business that specifically caters to homemade meth labs is reportedly a growing industry, the Associated Press reported.

Because some homeowners are reluctant to pay thousands of dollars to maintain their property damaged by meth labs, the "cottage industry" of meth lab clean-up businesses have been able to prosper as thousands of homes are used as laboratories. Depending on the damage and size of the house, it can take anywhere between $3,000 to $25,000 to properly clean the homes of residue.

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"The process is extremely cumbersome but I think it's necessary," said Dick Cochran, owner of a Memphis home where a renter was charged with making meth and causing a fire and explosion.

"You don't know how bad a house can be contaminated." Cochran added that while some insurance companies will cover the costs to fix the damage from meth labs, most of the companies will not cover meth cleanup.

In order to make a house that was once used as a meth lab safe, a contractor is needed to remove all contaminated materials from the walls to carpet to air vents. Next, an "industrial hygienist" performs tests on the house to see if it is safe or needs more work done.

"You do testing in the front end, so we can find out how much meth is there," said Siebenschuh, whose company, G7 Environmental Services, also does other testing. "Then the homeowner hires a contractor, and then he cleans it up."

As the AP reported, many homeowners don't disclose meth labs in their properties to authorities despite laws requiring them to do so, leaving many homes nationwide infected and dangerous to live in.

Joe Mazzuca, CEO of Meth Lab Cleanup LLC, has seen a 30 percent increase in business over the past years.

"We consider it to be still in its infancy," Mazzuca said.

Exposure to meth labs and reside can cause respiratory problems and are a threat to public safety, especially if children live or play in the area.

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