There are those who might believe that nothing much out of the ordinary happens in the parking lot at Wal-Mart in the western New York town of Amherst, York. This past week, however, the local police would dare to differ, as a random patrol uncovered an underground culvert that runs below the lot and several suspicious chemicals and other items employed in the production of methamphetamine.

The culvert lay in plain sight below the busiest section of the parking lot

Master storyteller, Edgar Allen Poe, once wrote about the benefits of hiding things in plain sight.

This drug operation was there for anyone who looked closely enough to see, but everyone was so absorbed with their own personal agendas that they didn’t even notice. In the past, there had been a few reports about meth being created in various Wal-Mart bathrooms, but never anything like this!

Swathed in hazmat protective gear, members of the New York State Police Contaminated Crime Scene Emergency Response Team gingerly entered a manhole accessible from the culvert that was located on one side of the store. The culvert was only tall enough for one person to stand in at a time.

They came upon unmistakable evidence and retrieved buckets full of: chemicals, spray paint cans, pop bottles and jars of suspected methamphetamine

Methamphetamine usage has reached worldwide epidemic proportions.

According to statistics issued from the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, nearly 500 metric tons of meth and other amphetamine-type stimulants are produced annually and more than 24.7 million abusers consume these drugs.

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Known as ice, fire, crystal, croak, speed, glass, crank and white cross, deadly meth can be made into pills or powder and is either injected or snorted. A mood elevator, this drug is appealing because it offers a heightened state of euphoria that lasts much longer than cocaine (up to eight hours).

Police plan to carefully study surveillance video.

Although no arrests have yet been made, police are carefully examining the video to see if there is any indication of traffic in and out of the culvert.

In the words of Captain Scott Chamberlin: “We did not receive any tips. Routine patrol, that’s what we do every day…We check in various areas that people who might be up to no good might be using for no good. We’ll talk to the proper authorities to figure out what we need to do to make sure that the culvert is not accessible anymore.”

Methamphetamine is a destroyer of life and a waste of human potential.

Our future is at stake in this terrible war against drugs. Stand up and be counted.

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