With the ever-growing problem of meth labs popping up in neighborhoods throughout the area, authorities gave people an opportunity to educate themselves about the health risks and other dangers associated with these labs.
A Meth Lab Community Forum was held at the Akron-Summit County Public Library Wednesday evening to provide people with resources and danger signs for where meth labs can be spotted.
Leslie Del Prince says the number of mobile meth labs being found in everyday places was a cause for concern.
"I think when I read that meth can be made in two-liter bottles and can be found on the road or in a park, I thought it was very dangerous and I wanted to know what it looked like," Del Prince said.
"It's undoubtedly a cause for concern."
Del Prince was holding her 14-month old great-niece, who she said shouldn't grow up around the dangerous chemicals used to make the highly addictive drug.
Everyday household items such as plastic or glass bottles can be used to make the dangerous drug and can be found anywhere from houses, cars, neighborhood parks, or along the side of the road.
These items are highly flammable and could explode, endangering the lives of families and children.
One of the speakers, Dr. Daryl Steiner of the CARE Center of Akron Children's Hospital says that there are numerous health risks for children that come in contact with the dangerous chemicals commonly found in meth labs.
"They can cause extensive tissue damage to the mouth and esophagus if ingested," Steiner said.
"They can also have complications from the toxic fumes associated with methamphetamines,so it's very harmful to be around."
The response to educating those on the dangers of meth's effects on children stem from the ongoing case involving Akron mother Heather Lerch, along with three other men are being charged in connection with the meth-related death of 17-month old Patrick Nicholas Lerch this past February.
Akron Police Lieutenant Brian Simcox, who said anytime you can get in front of the public and point out what these labs look like, it will do nothing but help the authorities rid communities of meth labs.
"There's no downside to this," Simcox says.
"These shake and bake, or one-pot labs are more commonly seen and the old-school labs on the tables are becoming a thing of the past, so if people see them, or see the debris they can call us and we can investigate."
Longtime Akron resident Sharon Geffken thinks events such as these are helpful for everyday people to help keep their community safe.
"I'm a big fan of education, so the more we can educate our community, the better."
Mick Pera says this now gives him the signs he needs to identify and possibly report a meth lab in his neighborhood.
"It's a good idea that people are aware of how to spot the signs," he says.
Roberta Rinehart says that by coming to the forum she could get some insight into what characteristics meth houses have.
"I'm a real estate agent, so I want to be able to know what's going on in our community, so it's good to have a heads-up on some details regarding meth houses we might not have.
Some of the warning signs for a possible meth lab include strong odors coming from a home, numerous antifreeze containers, fuel cans, and plastic bottles in the trash or on the side of the road, and people coming in and out of the house during odd hours.