Live 5 Investigates: A look inside an active meth lab

Published: Oct. 21, 2013 at 6:38 PM EDT|Updated: Oct. 21, 2013 at 11:00 PM EDT
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DORCHESTER COUNTY, SC (WCSC) - It's a look inside suspected meth labs never seen by the public.

As part of a Live 5 News investigation, the Dorchester County Sheriff's Office released videos that show deputies inside of suspected meth houses, searching for evidence.

"Mason jar with unknown white liquid in it, a bottle of red devil lye," a deputy is heard saying on one of the tapes.

Dorchester County Sheriff's Lieutenant Shawn Gibbons has been inside many meth labs. Gibbons heads up the team that tackles the labs.

He says for users, it's all about the high.

"The high of meth is ten times greater than it is for cocaine," Gibbons explained.

The risk for deputies also is very high every time they go inside a meth lab.

"The problem with it is when water mixes with lithium it can cause an explosion," Gibbons said.

That is where protective suits and oxygen masks come into play.

"There's vapors in the air that can get on our skin. There's also the actual items that are in bottles and cans and whatnot inside the lab that can actually be spilled on us," Gibbons said.

While wearing those suits the deputies have to deal with getting the meth lab removed from the house.

"It does kind of explode into a circus out there when we are doing it," said Gibbons. "Everybody's got a job to do."

Gibbons says it will be a never ending job because it's too easy for the meth makers to get their hands on meth making materials.

"We can't stop it, it's just not gonna happen."

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