MISSOULA – Are you buying a used car that previously may have been used to transport meth? Or is your child going to a daycare that could have been a meth lab in the past?
These are the questions a Montana pair are trying to answer with a new form of methamphetamine testing.
The Montana Department of Justice reported last year a 415 percent increase in methamphetamine found in controlled substance cases from 2011 to 2017 and a 375 percent jump in meth found in postmortem cases in that same span of time.
The increase of meth entering our state also raises the possibility of exposure increases.
Brandie Clark and Cindie White are working to protect consumers from contaminated vehicles, apartments, homes and businesses through Meth Detectives, LLC.
“Our community can start within childcare, start with car dealerships and also we work closely with property management. If we can get everyone on a move-out – have their place tested before the new lessee moves in – then that would be to everyone’s benefit,” said Clark.
“We would at least know when that place became contaminated and by whom that place became contaminated and can start to be some accountability,” she added.
Their company, “Meth Detectives, LCC” is pushing for car dealerships to mass test used vehicles for meth, along with daycare facilities – to make sure children are not being exposed.
If these businesses do so, they will hold a certificate – and in return, consumers will trust their product knowing it’s been tested for dangerous drugs. That’s the idea anyway.
Missoula Early Learning Center co-owner Mark Roberts said he jumped on the opportunity for his facility to be tested.
“I think it should be a set standard. We’re about providing care for children, not just day-to-day, but really everything they come into contact with. We have a lot these kiddos six-to-eight hours a day, and it’s a big part of their day,” Roberts said.
It’s not just some local daycare providers using the service. The Stevensville Police Department is testing to make sure their in-house equipment is safe for use after possible contact with meth.
“Everything that we collect has to go to a lab to be analyzed, that’s the legal process – but it gives us an idea if we have an issue in one of our vehicles that could be a toxicity issue that we need to address…so it is a good tool for us to be able to use,” said Stevensville Chief of Police James Marble.
According to Clark, there are currently seven states already implementing meth test standards for car dealerships stating if a car is contaminated it will not be licensed or titled.
If you are a business owner, or just bought a used car and want to test for meth – contact Clark and White at (406) 369-5163.
Reporting by Kent Luetzen for MTN News