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New Zealand company makes world-first methamphetamine detection alarm

New Zealand company makes world-first methamphetamine detection alarm

A New Zealand company has developed and patented a world-first device that can detect in airborne chemicals contained in methamphetamine.

The P-Alert methamphetamine Alarm is about the size of a TV remote control that can be placed anywhere inside the house.

The device, which has been assessed by ESR and Telarc, can detect all levels of methamphetamine chemicals in an enclosed area, whether from manufacture or smoking.

It provides an invaluable tool for landlords, rental property managers, hoteliers, moteliers, Airbnbs and anyone else letting out their properties for accommodation.

If chemicals are detected, the P-Alert Alarm immediately activates a silent alarm and sends information about the location and the level of contamination to a designated mobile number.

If the level is high – above a certain level – authorities will be informed. If contamination is low to medium, a report will be sent to the owners and/or managers of the property.

P-Alert Alarm can also provide a monitoring service that will collect and monitor the average daily readings.

Two tamper alarms also signal if the device is covered, removed or damaged in some way, making it virtually impossible to tamper with.

Business Development Manager of P-Alert Alarm Florence Lim says the company developed the alarm because they believe in doing good for the society.

“We have seen so many broken families, innocent children being affected, life wasted and heavy financial losses, all preventable. People of different ages, classes and a wide selection of communities are using methamphetamine – this drug cuts across socio-economic status. 

“It’s a major problem for landlords, with many insurance policies placing an obligation on them to be proactive about checking for meth contamination during and between tenancies, which can be difficult. And meth users often don’t match a predictable stereotype.

“In order for us to make a difference, we chose to tackle the problem from its source, by discouraging people from smoking methamphetamine and by consequence reducing the damage this drug is inflicting on our society.”

 

Ends

Contact for media comment:

Florence Lim
P-Alert Alarm
Business Development Manager 

Email: florence@palert.co.nz

Mobile: 021 048 8063

Website: palertalarm.co.nz

   

Facts about New Zealand’s meth problem

Houses contaminated through the cooking or smoking of methamphetamine is a growing issue in New Zealand. Particularly in small homes/apartments, the level of contamination by square meterage drastically increases.

According to the New Zealand Drug Foundation, the most recent government statistics show that overall numbers of people who use methamphetamine in New Zealand have remained relatively consistent in the past five years. 0.8% of New Zealanders (31,000 people) used the drug once or more in 2016/17.

Although overall usage of methamphetamine remains low at a population level, mis-use of the drug remains a serious concern. People of different ages, classes and a wide selection of communities have begun using methamphetamine. 

Meth addiction is a serious condition that is extremely difficult to overcome. It affects the brain and can create feelings of pleasure, increase energy and elevate mood. The effects of meth are physical and psychological, and are severe in most cases. 

Toxicity from these chemicals can remain in the environment around home labs long after the lab has been shut down, causing a wide range of damaging effects to health. The production of meth itself is a highly contaminating process and can endanger the people involved and also people in close proximity to the labs. Regardless of the level of toxicity or threshold, a previously contaminated home would be difficult to be either rented or sold.

Methamphetamine – Induced Psychosis (MAPs) can be a serious mental health issue. It is in some ways, selective, in that some regular methamphetamine users appear to retain high functioning status for a long term. Others however can fall into medium or high level psychosis status in a very short time.

Extensive studies published by the National Library of Medicine show that:

‘Methamphetamine induced psychosis (MAP) can persist and diagnoses of MAP often change to a diagnosis of schizophrenia over time.’

According to the United Nations World Drug Report, MAP has a multitude of repercussions, including serious mental health issues, criminal behavior and incarceration.

When methamphetamine users start experiencing psychotic episodes, during or following use of the drug, these episodes can manifest as paranoia. In some cases this in turn can lead to aggressive or violent behavior including anger or rage, which can result in actions such as unprovoked assault and/or causing damage to property. These behaviours can also be initiated during the ‘come down’ period that follows a period of methamphetamine use.