Understanding methamphetamine testing reports

Nov. 20, 2015

When reading testing reports like those linked to below it is easy to get confused by all the numbers and information written down on the paper. What we at Andy Andersons Industrial Services (AAIS) want to do is to explain in clear and concise language what the report means and how it shows how well the decontamination has worked.

Download sample reports

Initially, a number of swabs are taken from around a property and then handed over to a laboratory for analysis. Each swab is labelled as to where in the property it was taken, plus the time and date. The lab will then test the individual swabs and report on what the trace levels are for hazardous chemicals commonly used in illegal drug manufacturing, such as Amphetamine, Ephedrine, Methamphetamine and Pseudoephedrine. These levels determine what the next course of action will be regarding whether or not there is a need for decontamination.

We are going to concern ourselves with the Methamphetamine levels in the report as it is this that has caused the increased need for decontamination throughout New Zealand and the rest of the World.

A regular question we get asked is;
“Why take a number of samples when we know the property is positive for Meth?”

Individual swabs are necessary as often there will be varying trace levels found within the same property. Ministry of Health (MoH) guidelines state that a property is safe to inhabit providing the level of methamphetamine is below 0.5µg/100cm2. Each swab is tested against this level. The figures shown in the report reflects this and should any sample read 0.5µg/100cm2 or above, then some form of decontamination will be required.

Once the analysis report has been completed, it is given to the testing company who will provide the property owner with a full report. This report will explain the results and outline what work needs to be done (if required), so as to ensure that the property is safe to inhabit. As a decontamination company, AAIS has no input into the report and works as per the recommendations put forward when carrying out the decontamination process. AAIS will always liaise with the property owner to fully explain the decontamination procedure.

A follow up question we also get asked is;
“Why do we need a second Analysis Report?”

Once the decontamination process has been completed, it is a requirement that a second Analysis Report is produced to confirm that the decontamination process has been successful in reducing the levels to below the MoH guidelines. Again, it is the testing company that will provide the property owner with a report explaining the results.

As you can see from the genuine reports attached, AAIS were able to reduce all the areas within the property to well below the MoH guidelines. Prior to decontamination, the levels of Methamphetamine ranged from 1.04 µg /100cm2 in Bedroom 2, up to as high as 6.3 µg /100cm2 found in Bedroom 3. Post decontamination, all bar one of the samples were deemed untraceable as they were found to be at levels below 0.02µg /100cm2. The only trace level the Analysis Report could show was one sample showing 0.04µg /100cm2, an exceedingly low level.

At the decontamination levels AAIS achieved, the property is able to be safely inhabited again.

For more information please email us or call our office on 09-579 2639 and we will be happy to offer any help and advice we can.