Local Law Enforcement Seeing Rise In Potent Marijuana 'Wax'
OWASSO, Oklahoma - Owasso police arrested a man and his mother last week for drug possession. Officer said one of the drugs found is not only dangerous to smoke, but also to make.
It’s called "wax," and DEA agents say one hit of it can keep a person high for 24 hours.
The DEA says wax is the most powerful form of marijuana on the market; taking one hit is the same as smoking 15-20 joints of the best grade weed. They say it gets people higher, faster.
Wax is made by heating marijuana buds with a butane lighter to extract the THC, the active ingredient in marijuana, in a really concentrated form.
Police say an average marijuana cigarette has around 14 percent THC where the wax is 80 to 95 percent pure THC.
Owasso Lieutenant Tony Klahr works undercover and said they're seeing more wax on the streets.
"Over the last five years, we've really seen an upsurge, really made its presence known," he said.
Most people smoke wax with a glass pipe or vaporizer.
It's popular and legal in Colorado, but the DEA said the high is so powerful it can cause psychosis and even brain damage.
Klahr said, "It's to the point where they're hallucinating, and a lot of people have been hospitalized because of it."
Cooking wax is dangerous because it involves butane, which is flammable, and the fumes can fill a room which can cause fires and explosions.
"Anytime you're using butane gas in a closed environment, you're asking for trouble," Klahr said.
People in favor of using marijuana as medical treatment say wax is better because vaping a little hit of it is easier than smoking an entire joint and brings faster relief.
Regardless of how you feel about marijuana or the wax form, police remind people that it's still illegal in Oklahoma.