From the desk of City Manager Sarah Purdy...
April 22, 2020
One of the unfortunate side effects of being closed in with a lot of extra time is the proliferation of methamphetamine lab and hypodermic needle dumps. Our City Police Department issued a press release today to be careful if you run across one of these while outside playing, exercising and undertaking yard work.
In the past 51 days the Ogdensburg Police Department has responded to 41 incidents of discarded hypodermic needles all across the City. The quantity of needles for each incident ranges from one, to multiple. These needles pose an obvious health risk for anyone coming into contact with them. We are especially concerned for young, curious children, who may discover one of these needles recklessly discarded in the street, on sidewalks, or in our parks. If you should observe a hypodermic needle, DO NOT pick it up. Contact the Ogdensburg Police Department at 315-393-1551 and an officer will respond to remove and safely dispose of the needle(s).
Our Police Department also is dealing with a large volume of discarded methamphetamine “One-Pot” labs, which pose a significant danger to the community because they are volatile and caustic. The components of these labs are regularly discarded around our City. They pose significant health and safety risks, from the inhalation of the caustic fumes, to the flammability and explosive potential of the mixture of dangerous components.
In the last 51 days, our Police have responded to 20 meth lab dumps. These discarded labs are typically discovered by members of the public out for a walk, or investigating suspicious material found on or near their properties. Much like the hypodermic needles, the labs are criminally and recklessly left along the side of the road, our walking trails, in yards of unsuspecting community members, along our shorelines, and in the parks that our families and young adults utilize each day.
The most frequent components of a dump are plastic drink bottles, from 2-liter and 12-ounce soda bottles, to sports drink beverage bottles. They may be lying by themselves, but more often they are discarded in everyday, plastic grocery bags or in back packs. The bottles often have a toxic, beaded sludge inside that range from white to a green or aqua blue in color, having the appearance of fish tank pebbles. Other bottles may contain a yellow-colored liquid. Along with these bottles, items you may observe could be plastic tubing, coffee filters, lighter fluid bottles, lantern fuel or blister packs that are typically seen with types of medication. Again, these labs and their discarded components emit toxic gases, and have the potential to ignite and explode. If you see a suspicious bottle or suspicious bag, DO NOT pick it up or attempt to inspect the contents on your own. Contact our Police Department at 315-393-1551 so qualified personnel may respond to and inspect the suspicious materials.
Be hopeful, stay safe, stay healthy and stay together yet six feet apart. “Take 5 for New York” by calling someone and chatting for five minutes. To access the St. Lawrence County Public Health Department’s information please go to the County’s website at www.stlawco.org . In addition, here are links to several other sources of COVID-19 information that you may find useful.
Department of Labor Cares Act Information
US Small Business Administration
St. Lawrence County Industrial Development Agency
Governor Cuomo’s Website
New York State Department of Health
Protect Yourself & Stop the Spread of Germs
What You Need to Know
Please revisit this page for important updates from the City of Ogdensburg.