The highs and lows for meth cleanup

One of Quincy's largest meth busts, on Jan. 7, 2013.

Meth lab activity is at a high in Adams County. The Illinois State Police say a trend in the one-pot, or shake-and-bake method, has led to more meth busts in the area.

"Adams County led the state last year in meth labs that were cleaned up, so here specifically in Adams County, yes, it's a problem," Master Sgt. David Roll, with the Illinois State Police Meth Response Team said.

When looking to buy or rent, it's the

Residential Real Property Disclosure Act

that should inform you that a home has been the location of a meth lab. But what you won't find in that report is whether or not it was cleaned properly before resell.

The Meth Task Force will clean out the material evidence found from the meth bust, but the overall cleanup is the responsibility of the homeowner or landlord. It's a costly cleanup that's not enforced in the state of Illinois.

"There's no state statute that says a landowner is responsible for cleanup and here's what the standards are," Chuck Bevelheimer, Quincy's city planner said.

However, the Illinois Department of Health has a lengthy checkllist of reccomended cleanup, including removing most furniture in the home, repainting the walls and ceiling and triple washing the home from the inside out.

"There's all kinds of chemicals that are used," Roll said.

"The lead, the VOC's, the mercury," Bevelheimer said.

"It's not just the spill hazards that you have. It's also the cooking, all the gas, it permeates all the materials in the house, drapes, upholstery, carpet, things you wouldn't want to be exposed to over a long period of time," Roll said.

But this may not happen after every meth bust, and there's no one who will check back after any amount of time. So it's up to you to learn the history of the home.

"Nothing wrong with knocking on the door and asking the neighbor, too, because, every time we go and clean up a meth lab, we put one of these bright orange stickers on the residence. So, if anyone's seen one of these, chances are most people in the neighborhood are aware of that," Ross said. "If you suspect, I would certainly go the extra mile before you would purchase or potentially rent."

You can find a list of meth houses on the Drug Enforcement Administration website