So maybe you’ve moved into a meth house. The walls are a blotchy yellow, the air smells of ammonia, and you keep getting headaches for no reason. A 2017 report by SBS suggested that there are at least 7,000 properties around Australia like this: homes that have been contaminated by former residents cooking methamphetamines. And that’s a serious market for anyone in the business of meth lab decontamination, which is why Jim Penman has risen to the challenge.
You probably know Jim as the smiling, goatee-sporting, bucket hat-wearing face of Jim’s Mowing: the world’s largest mowing and garden maintenance franchise system. But Jim wears many hats, it seems. He’s also in the business of gutter cleaning and rubbish removal; he’ll dispose of used needles and syringes that are left lying around in public places. Or, if you need it, he’ll decontaminate your house after it’s been used to manufacture meth.
Jim’s Hazardous Material Removal specialises in the “testing, removal, and remediation of properties that have been exposed to hazardous materials such as methamphetamine, mould, and asbestos,” according to their website. The business was established in response to a “growing need” for these kinds of services in Australia, and promises “a strong focus on customer service and confidentiality… [and] best work practices to ensure successful and stress free remediation.”
As meth cooks diversify their business locations to include Airbnbs and car boots, the amount of properties affected by the hazardous after-effects of drug manufacturing is growing. “Meth labs can be found almost anywhere,” the company points out: “in houses, apartments, cars, storage units, and motorhomes.” And Jim’s there to whip them all back into shape via a trusty four-step removal process.
The first step involves pre-forensic testing: swabbing the property and seeing if there are any traces of meth. Then comes the onsite survey and inspection, during which staff identify affected areas and determine a plan of attack, and the decontamination: removing all loose materials, flushing all drains, sinks, and toilets, cleaning any ventilation systems, and treating all surfaces. Finally, post forensic testing confirms that the property is of an adequate hygiene and a clearance certificate is issued to re-inhabit the property.
So if you think your place might be a converted crack house, maybe give Jim a call.