– Freon Thefts On The Rise For Drug Use (CBS, July 13, 2012):
SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – Police say thieves climbed up a ladder of a local business and ransacked the three air conditioning units on the roof for scrap and the very dangerous gas Freon, which can cause a person to be high and kill them in the same breath.
It may cost tens of thousands of dollars to repair each air conditioning units that were broken into by the suspects.
Joe Kessler, owner of McDonald Heating and Air, said along with the copper and aluminum parts inside, they also got away with a Freon fix.
“It can get you delusional, like sniffing gasoline or paint, any toxic fumes,” said Kessler.
Kessler told CBS13 the company is seeing a spike in calls where their customer’s air conditioning unit is mysteriously out of Freon.
“It doesn’t look like any reason there shouldn’t be refrigerant in the unit. So, it’s possible to assume someone took it out of there,” Kessler.
They took it out, only to breathe it in.
There are federal regulations for all new AC units to come with a cap that can only be unlocked by a technician.
However, any unit installed before last year doesn’t have the same requirements, which leaves most of us a target for fiends and nothing short of a sobering repair bill.
“It’s unfortunate because it’s definitely hurting their bodies,” Kessler.
While the feds have only required these caps to protect from Freon thefts since last year, you can get one to protect your unit.