Lebanon Police Department issued education information on preventing meth production to local hoteliers on Thursday, following this past weekend’s meth lab explosion at Travel Inn.
Lebanon Police Chief Scott Bowen noted that two suspects were being questioned, but no charges have been filed.
He said the information delivered will assist hotel management in making decisions when renting rooms to persons who may be cooking meth in them.
Hotels and motels are at high-risk of drug activity, prostitution and other criminal behavior, the information noted, however, meth labs present both short term and long term danger.
“Meth cooks can set up an operation and manufacture the drug in just a few hours. The process for producing meth results in contamination of the room, its contents, the air and possibly the ventilation and plumbing system,” the release read.
In addition to room hazards, studies have shown exposure to elements of the drug can cause cancer, permanent brain damage, respiratory and immune system problems.
The release instructed hotel management to not take matters into their own hands if meth production is suspected, but to call law enforcement immediately because of the unpredictable nature of the drug. “Both meth labs and meth users are extremely dangerous,” it advised.
“You mainly see meth labs in hotels or in cars,” Bowen said. “You rarely see them in homes because either the makers do not have their own home or because they know how production contaminates it.”
Bowen said the incident at Travel Inn is still under investigation, but that two suspects believed to be involved were being interviewed. “The investigating is continuing. More than likely the information will be presented to the grand jury,” he added.
Bowen said the increase of methamphetamine production in Tennessee can possibly be attributed to the crackdown by the state on prescription drug sale and use.
“We are seeing a switch back to meth and heroine. Whenever they crackdown on one drug, it pushes drug users and drug sellers to other things.”
Staff Writer Sabrina Garrett may be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.