BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — U.S. Attorney William Hochul of the Western District of New York says a rise in the production of methamphetamine may be tied to use among workers in the fracking fields of northern and western Pennsylvania.
“The concern is workers coming from the mid-west who had already been using methamphetamine,” Hochul said. “They have more money in their pocket, than perhaps they had before.”
He believes one of the drug’s effects,a surge of energy, may be the reason for their addictions.
“Some methamphetamine users report being able to stay up 48 to 72 hours before ultimately they have the crash which inevitably follows,” he said.
Hochul also believes the relatively low cost of purchasing the drug might be another reason for the increase in its use.
There has been a dramatic increase in raids of clandestine meth labs in Western New York and across the state.
The Drug Enforcement Administration says last year there were 225 methamphetamine labs dismantled by law enforcement. 34 were in Western New York.
Erie County Sheriff’s narcotics agents raided what is believed to be a meth lab in a storage facility on Grand Island Thursday night. Two people were arrested.
“I think when this one is closed up we’re going to find another one,” Alan Rozansky of the Erie County Sheriff’s Department said.
U.S. Attorney Hochul says he seen statistics where one in six of these labs explode during the production process.
Besides meth’s devastating effect on the brain and body, Hochul says producers of the illicit drug will put toxic elements down the drain or into the trash, further putting communities at risk.