Methanol, amphetamine and benzene: all of this is extracted from the ground during the remediation of mega drug lab Overberg

Methanol amphetamine and benzene all of this is extracted from

What exactly is in the ground around the drug lab?

Eight different types of chemicals have been found in the soil and groundwater on the site of the former drug lab. All these resources are necessary to produce ecstasy or are residues from production. To extract these substances from the ground, the earth is excavated and heated to 100 degrees in special machines. The chemicals can then be filtered out. Clean soil is then dumped back onto the site. Because the substances lie deep in the ground, there was no danger to public health. The superficial pollution has already been removed by the municipality in 2020. However, the employees involved in the soil remediation wear special protective clothing due to the risk of fire and toxic fumes that may be released.


Highly flammable liquid and vapour. Causes serious eye irritation. May cause drowsiness or dizziness.


May be released as vapor during excavation. Irritating to eyes and skin and is absorbed through the skin. Carcinogenic.


Volatile liquid. Toluene is harmful with prolonged exposure to high concentrations, it can cause memory problems. Inhalation of large amounts causes dizziness, nausea or loss of consciousness.

Methyl ethyl ketone

Colorless and highly flammable liquid with pungent, sweet odour. May cause drowsiness and dizziness.


Colorless and highly flammable liquid. Toxic if ingested.


Can convert to toxic ammonia. Corrosive and irritating. At high concentrations it can cause paralysis and suffocation.


Colorless and volatile liquid, sweetish odour. Is harmful to health.


Main component of ecstasy. Speeds up the heart rate and increases blood pressure. Can lead to heart attack or stroke. Large quantities have been found in groundwater.