Drug agents see increase in 'shake and bake' labs

BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) - Cullman and Etowah Counties have seen a jump in meth lab busts this year because of a new way of making the highly addictive drug.

This comes at a time when authorities started seeing a decline in meth lab cases.

Authorities say this new method is an easier and cheaper way of making meth.

It's called the "shake and bake" or one pot method.

There are no containers or stoves involved.

Toxic chemicals, water and other ingredients are used.

There's a chemical reaction from the products, and ultimately a powder is produced.

Drug agents say the manner used in the new method poses a threat to everyday citizens because of the way they are discarded.

"They are dumping them along side the road, throwing it in dumpsters, people's yards, said Robert Savage with the Etowah County Drug Enforcement Unit. "This process contains hydrochloric acid. It's a problem if a young child or anyone gets hold of it, particularly a child."

Savage says the new method is becoming more and more popular among users. They can make the drug in hours instead of days, and they can make it on the go.

The new way of making meth can be just as dangerous as the old way.

It was the cause of a house fire on Georgia Avenue in Gadsden.

The chemical reaction in the bottle caused an explosion.