Nationwide Campaign Will Warn Of Meth Dangers - wave3.com-Louisville News, Weather & Sports

Nationwide Campaign Will Warn Of Meth Dangers

By Anne Marshall

(LOUISVILLE) -- A nationwide campaign aims to end the meth menace, and Kentuckiana could use the help -- 562 meth labs and dump-sites found in Kentucky during 2004, and over 1,000 sites were found in Indiana. While there's been a significant decrease in meth labs in the Bluegrass this year, new public service announcements will soon hit the airwaves educating viewers on the dangers of meth. WAVE 3's Anne Marshall investigates.

Before a crowd of those who make and enforce the law, Todd Z. spoke of how he broke free from meth not long ago.

"On December 1st, 2004, I was busted for the first time," he says, his voice cracking. Even on his broad shoulders, 40 grams is all it takes to break this grown man.

"I got busted for trafficking. I had 40 grams of dope in my pocket," says Todd, whose addiction is now behind him.

But his single success story can't support a future that's drug-free.

That's why the Office of National Drug Policy and the Partnership for a Drug Free America are going to be running several Public Service Announcements discussing the dangers of meth.

One commercial features a woman making meth in a lab as the fumes flow up into an upstairs apartment where a little girl is unknowingly inhaling the toxic fumes. The tagline: "So, who has the drug problem now?"

The TV ads are targeted towards teens and parents, and eventually, there will be radio and print ads as well.

Louisville is one of 23 cities where ads will get airtime, but the timing may seem off.

"Our clandestine labs are going down," said Tony King with the DEA.

King says that since a new law took effect in June making it tougher to buy over the counter meth ingredients like cold medicines, the number of labs has decreased by 80 percent -- but the downward trend doesn't give the whole picture.

Says King: "The meth we're seeing generally is a form called ice -- it's a very high purity."

With home based labs down, more potent meth in much greater quantities is being smuggled into Kentucky, primarily from Mexico.

"If we diminish the demand for meth," King says, "we'll diminish the supply."

The 30-second spots capture tragic days of real people. One young girl tells about the day her father was busted by the cops and she had to go to a hospital for decontamination.

The hope is that sharing such stories will steal a potential user from a most addictive drug.

As Lt. Gov. Steve Pence put it: "Drugs will end up as a losing opposition for you. There is no upside."

Online Reporter: Anne Marshall

Online Producer: Michael Dever