Probe Continues Into Anhydrous Ammonia Blast


Thursday, January 8th 2009, 7:53 pm
By: News On 6


By Craig Day, The News On 6

UNDATED -- Three people are in the hospital after an explosion of anhydrous ammonia.  Investigators say it was inside a car being used as a rolling meth lab.  It happened in Ottawa County near the Missouri State Line on Wednesday.

Investigators say two men and a woman from Missouri were traveling just east of the Highway 10 and 60 junction when they drove off the road.  When deputies arrived, they found the three with severe chemical burns.

"It soaked into their car and was burning them and they were actually stripping their clothes off and throwing stuff to the side," said Ottawa County Sheriff Terry Durborow.

Sheriff's investigators say while the victims were cooking meth in the car, a fire extinguisher with anhydrous ammonia hidden inside exploded, spewing on all three of them.  Anhydrous ammonia can be used to make meth.

"This anhydrous is nothing to mess around with, especially if you're not trained in how to use and how to handle it, but I don't know what gets into people, they seem to think they can put it in anything and it will be alright and it's not," said Ottawa County Sheriff Terry Durborow.

It's the sixth meth lab bust by area law enforcement in the past two weeks.

The meth problem is the subject of a statewide campaign designed to bring awareness to the issue.  The program has been successful in other states.

The Crystal Darkness campaign includes a 30 minute TV and radio documentary with shocking images of meth use and consequences.       

Ottawa County Sheriff Terry Durborow hopes the message gets across.

"I think a lot of the people that get enticed into using it doesn't understand what they're getting into when they start.  It's one of the most addictive drugs there is," said Ottawa County Sheriff Terry Durborow.

As for the three people in the car, they haven't been charged, but likely will be if they survive.

Crystal Darkness Oklahoma is a coalition of Oklahomans working together to stop methamphetamine in our state.

It will air on The News On 6 Tuesday evening at 6:30.

For more information and to schedule a watch party, visit www.crystaldarknessoklahoma.org.