Washington Dealer Closed For Meth Contamination

Edward Niedermeyer
by Edward Niedermeyer

The Washington state Department of Licensing has pulled O&J Sales’ license after finding 22 cars were contaminated by methamphetamine, reports The Whidby News Times. The cars, worth $70,000, were crushed due to the high cost of cleaning them to state standards. And those high state standards (0.1 micrograms per 100 square centimeters, 15 times the California standard) are a cause of frustration for the lot’s owner. “If the standards were applied to every car dealership in the state, most of them would go out of business,” says O&J owner Mark Brown, noting that one of the crushed vehicles was bought from a state police auction. Unfortunately for Brown, his lot was raided in March, when police found 94 grams of meth. This led to the arrest of Brown’s son, the lot’s manager. The O&J building tested at 5,200 times the legal limit for meth on a swab test. The shutdown of O&J is the first meth contamination-based closure on record.

Edward Niedermeyer
Edward Niedermeyer

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4 of 23 comments
  • Friedclams Friedclams on Jul 20, 2009

    I appreciate your thoughtful reply, Adamatari. You're probably right that meth itself is less of an environmental hazard that the chemicals that create it. I was assuming the dealership actually was a meth lab based on the tested high levels. Seeing as how the meth problem isn't going away, it would be good to know if there are ambient hazards involved in its use as opposed to manufacture. But I share other posters' hopelessness about getting intelligent policy that protects the public from any chemical risks, let alone the political hot-potato of illegal drugs.

  • RedStapler RedStapler on Jul 20, 2009

    Another angle on this would be that the dealership was being used to launder the cash from drug sales. A BHPH lot would be great cover.

  • Newcarscostalot Newcarscostalot on Jul 21, 2009

    I live outside of Olympia, WA. and Meth is a big issue around here.

  • Anonymous Anonymous on Jul 21, 2009

    Probably a good thing those cars were crushed, given Washington is a border state. Heaven help the hapless buyer of such a car who has nothing to do with drugs but tries one day to drive across the border.