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South Dakota Meth Users Try New, Potentially Lethal Method to Pass Drug Screens

A new trend in “beating” drug tests for methamphetamine has emerged in South Dakota: “baking soda bombs.” 


Baking soda bombs are a combination of water, bleach, and baking soda that “medical experts and law enforcement officials argue . . . is more dangerous than it is effective” (Fuhr, 2017). Sodium bicarbonate, the main ingredient in baking soda, is supposed to mask meth in urine, and many cases have been seen in Mitchell, South Dakota recently.
Drug-related arrests in South Dakota have risen “12.5 percent from 2015 to 2016 with 7,671 reported cases,” which results in more users on probation and more urine drug screens (Leyden, 2017). “This shows the strength of the addiction. If someone is going to go to this kind of extreme, it’s a pretty strong desire to want to continue using,” stated Janae Oetken, clinical supervisor of a Mitchell, South Dakota rehab center (Fuhr, 2017; Leyden, 2017). 


Chief Court Services Officer Ron Freeman stated, “If someone complains about feeling very ill or suddenly has an upset stomach during their urine analysis test, that is usually a sign” of baking soda bomb use (Leyden, 2017). Futhermore, said Dr. Darla Edinger of Avera Queen of Peace Hospital in Mitchell, “If someone is drinking bleach and baking soda, it could kill them. If someone is taking baking soda or bleach, it is not going to stop the drugs from being detected if sent to a lab” (Leyden, 2017). 












Fuhr, P. (2017). ‘Baking soda bombs’ emerge as latest drug test trend in South Dakota. Retrieved from https://www.thefix.com/baking-soda-bombs-emerge-latest-drug-test-trend-south-dakota
Leyden, L. (2017). ‘Baking soda bombs’ show the extreme strength of addiction. The Daily Republic. Retrieved from http://www.mitchellrepublic.com/news/local/4343632-baking-soda-bombs-show-extreme-strength-addiction