A tracking system in North Carolina, launched less than two weeks ago, has already blocked more than 1,600 questionable purchases of products of the main ingredient for methamphetamine, said Attorney General Roy Cooper, according to the North Carolina WRAL News.
The tracking system monitors sales of pseudoephedrine and is blocking almost 150 purchases a day – that’s a lot of meth.
The tracking system was launched due to a new law that took effect January 1, and requires pharmacies to use an electronic system to keep track of purchases of products containing pseudoephedrine. Found in many medications for the common cold, pseudoephedrine is the main ingredient in meth.
The tracking system lets pharmacies know if a buyer has reached the legal limit for purchases of products with pseudoephedrine, blocking the sale if that’s the case. North Carolina law limits purchases of such products to no more than two packages at once and no more than three within 30 days.
The tracking system allows the North Carolina Bureau of Investigation to see when someone is trying to make multiple purchases of large amounts of the medicine, possibly indicating they want it for meth rather than a head cold.
Over 66 percent of pharmacies in North Carolina are now using the tracking system, with more in the process of joining. The system also links North Carolina with 18 other states, including neighboring South Carolina and Tennessee.
“We’re using technology to stop meth makers from going store to store or state to state to evade detection,” Cooper said.