06/01/12 Last week members of the Indiana State Police Meth Suppression Section (MSS) and the Underwater Search Rescue/Recovery Team (USRT), joined forces to clear meth trash from the Yellow River in Marshall County.  The state police recently became aware of the problem after a local fisherman reported seeing several suspicious items floating in the Yellow River near Peach Road and 14th Road that he believed could be meth trash.

    For years the Indiana State Police MSS and Clandestine Lab Team members have been responsible for cleaning up meth labs.  However, over the last couple of years police have seen the manufacturing of meth turn almost exclusively to the 1-Pot method of production with the remnants of the meth production often being discarded along the side of the highway.  It appears now that the meth cooks have turned to throwing their trash into our waterways, commented Meth Suppression Officer Trooper Andy Cochran.

   Officers spent the better part of the day navigating nearly three miles of the Yellow River starting at Peach Road and continuing past Redwood Road.  The amount of trash that we found in the river made your stomach turn, commented Sergeant Trent Smith, USRT Assistant Commander.  Officers recovered more than two dozen plastic bottles that were used as 1-Pot Reaction Vessels or Hydrogen Chloride Gas Generators as well as empty pseudoephedrine blister packs, burnt foil strips, soiled coffee filters, empty instant cold packs, aquatic tubing, salt, and smoking devices.  Officers also removed other non hazardous trash from the river as they came across it but quickly ran out of space on their boats.

    With warmer weather approaching, more people will be outside walking, jogging and bike riding in rural areas.  The potential exists that some people may come across a meth lab or trash left behind by those who have manufactured methamphetamine.

     The Indiana State Police Meth Suppression Section reminds citizens that the trash from outdoor meth labs may contain chemicals that are toxic, flammable, corrosive, and acidic.  When mixed together the chemicals can be highly explosive.  The fumes are toxic and can cause internal damage to organs.

If you think you’ve found a meth lab, call the Indiana State Police Meth Hotline at 1-800-453-4756, or Report It Online.  Tips may be made anonymously.