In some parts of town you be getting high on everyone’s supply

Wednesday, 21 December, 2011

Traces of illicit drugs have been detected in the air of neighbourhoods or areas where their use is prevalent, though at this stage it is not believed such residuals pose a threat to the health of non-users.

But further research revealed that atmospheric concentrations of certain drugs were higher wherever drug use was presumed to be more prevalent – leading Cecinato and co-workers to wonder if they had found a better way to estimate the extent of drug abuse in a given area. Currently, authorities must rely on indirect information, such as communitywide surveys or questionnaires and police records. These methods can be time-consuming and expensive, Cecinato explains. Measuring the amount of drugs in the air, his group suspected, might be accurate, fast, and cheap.

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