One in two homes tested for meth in Queensland come back with a positive reading.

MORE than half of all Queensland homes tested for methamphetamine residue have come back with positive results, and some of the suburbs are where you would least expect it.

From Chapel Hill and Chermside, to Woolloongabba, East Brisbane, Maroochydore and Upper Mount Gravatt, houses in these suburbs, and many more, tested positive to a presence of residue of methamphetamine when tested by Meth Screen between January 1 2018 and March 31 2019.

Meth Screen tested 179 Queensland homes last year, with 97 of those returning a positive result for methamphetamine residue.

Of the 56 properties tested by Meth Screen in the first quarter of 2019, 28 came back positive, and 27 were above the acceptable level of 0.5ug (micrograms per 10sq cm).

Some of the highest readings of 2018 were up to 1600 times the acceptable level, with sky high readings at Jimboomba (800ug), Chermside (780ug), Southport (300ug), Chapel Hill (310ug) and Redland Bay (102ug), among many others.

Meth Screen test for traces of methamphetamine. PICTURE: MATT THOMPSON

Meth Screen managing director Ryan Matthews said no suburb was immune, with some of the most unsuspecting of houses testing as contaminated.

“We’ve seen levels in beautiful homes that you would never suspect,” Mr Matthews said.

“Some people in more affluent suburbs have got more money.

“You can’t rule it out based on demographic — it doesn’t discriminate.”

Australian Bureau of Statistics data shows death rates from methamphetamine quadrupled from 1999 to 2016, from 0.4 per 100,000 to 1.6 deaths respectively.

Last month, News Corp reported a Gold Coast family unknowingly lived in a house with dangerous levels of methamphetamine and not only had to throw out most of their belongings, they experienced health issues as a result of the residue.

While Mr Matthews said it was difficult to know exactly how many Australian houses could have a presence of methamphetamine as there had been no long term testing, by comparing it to data from New Zealand and the United States with the rate of methamphetamine usage in Australia, it could conservatively be estimated that 8-10 per cent of properties in Australia would test positive to a presence of methamphetamine.

However, he stressed this did not mean the property was contaminated.

Buying a house without testing for methamphetamine is like buying a lotto ticket and hoping for the best.

Mr Matthews urged prospective home buyers to test a house for methamphetamine residue in the same manner one would get a building and pest inspection before purchasing, and for investors between tenants.

Testing starts from $198, but Mr Matthews warned those who choose to forgo screening risked thousands in clean-up bills, let alone the health risks contamination could cause.

“Most of the time there is absolutely no evidence (of methamphetamine contaminants) except for maybe neighbours talking about it,” he said.

“How are you going to know if it’s contaminated if you don’t test it?

“The levels could be really low or they could be staggeringly high, but if you don’t know, as soon as you purchase it and you then find out its contaminated, there could be a $30,000 to $40,000 problem.”

See full article here: https://www.realestate.com.au/news/half-of-tested-properties-contain-traces-of-meth/

Queensland this summer, reached a high risk of boosting natural disasters, according to the Bureau of Meteorology. There is an increased risk of floods typhoons and bushfires, for Queensland and locals are urged to be prepared.

Australia could be hit by more tornadoes this week as heavy rains & storms set to soak Queensland this week thunderstorms hit the country’s east coast.

With about four hurricanes crossing the coast, this season, which usually starts from November to April, typically results in about 11 cyclones that will affect Australian waters. BOM expert senior meteorologist said that the Queenslanders should prepare themselves for season-high peak normally in February.

Data from BOM shows that at least one tropical cyclone per year has passed through the coast since logging began in the 1970s. Meteorologist Rob Sharpe said that rain from the east coast would turn into intense thunderstorms over the weekend.

The meteorologist also said that there is an average or slightly above average cyclone is expected in the Australian region this season.

Meteorologists warn Australians to prepare for the ongoing hurricane season on the east coast. They said our tropical cyclone season starts in November, which runs from November to April, and usually will reach its peak in February.

West-central and South Queensland are still recovering from previous tornadoes and the severe cyclone storm that hit the area last month. The outlook for this year is that Queensland may see more tropical cyclones than we normally see in a typical year.

Experts said Queensland would have a heightened risk from the cyclone in the eastern part of the country. Further, they said we’re getting closer to the event, but I think it sends the message to be prepared. and make sure you’re ready wherever you are.

The metrologist said that the rain gave way to the sun, the extra heat would make conditions suitable for thunderstorms. It only takes one severe weather event to be life-threatening and so we are urging the people of Queensland to prepare themselves for increased storm risk.

Increased Flood Risk

 

The outlook for this year is affected by a double risk of forming a normal La Nia, warmer than average ocean temperatures north of Australia, and a negative dipole in the Indian Ocean. The area will experience another month of rain in the coming days with thunderstorms possible over Brisbane and the Gold Coast.

Metrologists say there is also a significant risk of flooding this season. This year we are seeing different conditions where floods could peak earlier and last longer. Many of the southern and south-eastern basins were wetter than what we see today, so they were able to respond to rainfall more quickly. Southeast Queensland has faced major flooding on the final day with more than 70mm of rain last night and more expected to hit this afternoon.

Risk of Bushfires in Southeast

 

In the south and southeast, we also see grass growing due to the rain, so this area is also threatened by forest fires this season. Low rainfall has increased the risk of bushfires in the Capricornia areas. There is an increased risk of fire this season due to the dry nature of the forest there.

Fire and Emergency Relief Minister Mark Ryan said at Milton State School, which was badly damaged by the 2011 floods, is a reminder of the extreme weather events for which the people of Queensland must prepare.

The weather bureau warn Queensland to be aware of your weather conditions, know your risks and prepare for a bad Weather Forecast launched today and in conjunction with getting Ready Queensland Week.
Research shows that 57% of people in Queensland have an emergency plan, which is an increase from about 18% eight years ago, but there is still a lot of room for improvement.

We also know that many people have moved to Queensland from other states this year and we welcome these new residents with open arms to our great state, but we also want to let them know that in Queensland storms can strike anywhere and in the world.

Unfortunately, it’s not a question of if, but when there will be bad weather somewhere in Queensland and so we all need to be prepared. Queensland was hit by 11 natural disasters in 50 local government areas last season alone, including hail, hurricanes, bushfires, and floods.