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Meth Lab Fires

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  • EFD840
    replied
    If you've got a good working relationship with them, arhaney's suggestion about working with your local law enforcement agency is a very, very good one.

    As George pointed out, rural areas are popular locations for clandestine labs and often the FD is the first agency on the scene when the process goes wrong so it is important for us to recognize the signs of a lab.

    Having said that, I want to add a word of caution when you approach your LE agencies about getting info. If you don't have a good working relationship they may resist the idea because nobody wants to teach a group of people how to cook meth. Make sure you tell them you're looking for recognition and response training.

    A couple more things to keep in mind - clan labs need not be in a fixed structure. You may well encounter rolling labs in everything from moving vans to car trunks. Since you found this on the roadside, that is a distinct possibility in your incident (another reason to make sure you wear SCBA on those car fires).

    Finally, these people are often very well armed and completely paranoid. To a tweeker, we aren't the good guys so your personal safety is very much at risk if the folks are still around.

    Leave a comment:


  • GeorgeWendtCFI
    replied
    Re: haz-mat

    Originally posted by fireman6433
    I understand that meth-labs should be haz-mat stuff, but if there is a fire And nobody knows its a lab then we get called out. And even if you know its a lab...do you just let it burn??? What if there are People inside???
    We have never dealt with drug lab stuff in the past. This town is small and you don't think about drug labs around here. We know there are drugs but everyone assumes they come from somewhere else. I know better than that and i figure there are a lot more labs in our area than anyone thinks!
    I misssed this post when it was first posted.

    Dude, you are in the PERFECT spot for a clan lab. Rural areas, far away from nosy people are what many of the mutss who operate clan labs are looking for. Barns, warehouses, and remote houses are favorite spots.

    A clan lab is a stinky operation that generates alot of waste. They can fly under the radar in a rural area much more easily than in a populated area. Not that there aren't clan labs in populated areas, but rural areas are not immune.

    Leave a comment:


  • LACAPT
    replied
    Our SOP's say people first, if its even suspected to be a lab its still people first and people only. You protect exposures and put the fire out from as far away as possible and then hand the scene over to the law enforcement. From that point on its their baby. Very few fire depts.(even the large ones) have the resourses or the expertice to deal with hazmat that is produced from meth labs. Leave it to the people who know the skinny on this crap is my best advice.

    Leave a comment:


  • fireman6433
    replied
    haz-mat

    I understand that meth-labs should be haz-mat stuff, but if there is a fire And nobody knows its a lab then we get called out. And even if you know its a lab...do you just let it burn??? What if there are People inside???
    We have never dealt with drug lab stuff in the past. This town is small and you don't think about drug labs around here. We know there are drugs but everyone assumes they come from somewhere else. I know better than that and i figure there are a lot more labs in our area than anyone thinks!

    Leave a comment:


  • jcasey
    replied
    Meth labs are pure Hazmat. The ATF has a good book on it. The PATC (public agency training council)also has a good class. The FETN through Primedia training has a set of videos.

    Leave a comment:


  • arhaney
    replied
    We received some good training from our local Narcotics officer. You might try that angle for training. The web also has a lot of information if you will try some of the different search engines.
    Also, just FYI, take a look at the thread that I've started about the outcome of a meth lab explosion and fire that we had a while back at:
    http://cms.firehouse.com/forums2/sho...threadid=64954

    Leave a comment:


  • fireman6433
    replied
    meth lab trash

    The Sheriff Dept. was on the scene and i voiced my concern. A few hours later i guess they decided to do something about it and the SBI steped in. They determined that it was part of a Meth lab and sent all firefighter involved thruogh Decontamination. All of our clothing had to be destroed. They say we are lucky that none of us got sick.

    Leave a comment:


  • nsideff
    replied
    Here is a link to an article about it.

    http://cms.firehouse.com/content/art...Id=18&id=12333

    Some indicators of meth labs are blacked-out windows,individuals coming and going all hours of the night, the presence of containers of various sizes, some are empty and are being reused for processing, the presence of lots of propane cylinders (clan-labbers are notorious for using the residential propane tanks to steal anhydrous ammonia, which they use, what they don't often know is that the ammonia degrades the rubber tubing and such which can create a leak), booby traps, etc. The lab can be run out of anything, not just houses...just keep that in mind the next time you run a U-Haul or box truck fire.

    Leave a comment:


  • GeorgeWendtCFI
    replied
    That stuf does not necessarily have to be evidence of a meth lab. It is also a common way to make pipe bombs. Do not post the chemicals on here, but ask the PD to have a bomb tech look at the evidence list to make sure what you are dealing with. Also, correlate this incident with any others in the general area that may involve an IED.

    Leave a comment:


  • fireman6433
    started a topic Meth Lab Fires

    Meth Lab Fires

    My department was called to a grass fire started by trash bag on the side of the road. Two Sheriff Deputys where looking in them for an address to figure out who dumped them and the bags burst into flames. Turns out that the bags had trash from a Meth Lab. One bag was full of Match books with the strikers cut off and the others had diffrent chemicals and stuff in them, But since they burned the evidence is gone.

    O.K. ....My question ......

    Does anyone know of a training video or something about what to look out for in these situations. Or reconizing a Drug Lab.

    thanx
    6406

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