How to report a cannabis farm
Cannabis farms are dangerous – and they can crop up in any residential area. Wherever you live, it’s possible that drugs are being produced behind any of those closed doors. But what’s the link between farms and energy theft?
How cannabis and energy theft are linked
Your report can go a long way to catch real-life criminals in the act. For example, a farm with over 125 plants was found in a flat above a minimarket in the West Midlands thanks to information that came via the stayenergysafe service. Cases like this show that information from the public is vital to the work police do.
You may not always feel safe to report what you see when it comes to drug farms. That’s why stayenergysafe is powered by Crimestoppers to protect your anonymity from the minute you submit a report, online or by phone.
How can you spot the signs of a cannabis farm?
You can look out for a number of potential signs that might suggest there’s illegal activity inside a house in your neighbourhood. Here are the 8 major signs:
1. The smell
Cannabis plants have a distinctive, strong smell – particularly right before they are harvested. If there are a lot of plants in a property, you may be able to smell it from the outside.
2. Covered up windows
If the curtains are always drawn or they are covered and boarded up from the inside, it’s possible that something is being concealed from view.
3. Excessive security measures
Particularly in a neighbourhood that is generally safe, excessive safety measures (such as extra padlocks and locks on the door, grille fences or bars on windows) may be another sign of potential wrongdoing.
4. Lots of condensation
Cannabis plants need a greenhouse-like environment to grow. If you constantly see condensation on the windows, especially in the summer months, it might be caused by growing cannabis plants.
5. Irregular electricity bills
Landlords – this is one for you to look out for. Have the electricity bills suddenly spiked or dropped? If they are much lower than usual, it’s quite likely that the tenants are fiddling with the meter. This is potentially very dangerous, and you should report it immediately.
6. No snow on the roof
Does snow melt straight off the roof on the suspicious house? Lots of heat is produced from a cannabis factory, so it might be the only one in the street with no snow on top.
7. Bright lights
It’s unlikely that an average person would need to have bright lights on 24 hours a day. If you see this sort of behaviour, it might be a sign of something more sinister.
8. Ventilation sounds
The constant sound of fans could indicate that ventilation is being used to help grow cannabis plants.
What happens when I report?
If you suspect you’ve spotted a cannabis factory stealing electricity, it’s important that you share any relevant information with stayenergysafe.
None of the information you share can be traced back to you as an individual – only the essential details are passed on to the police or relevant authorities who can then take it forward to catch these criminals in the act.
Please don’t turn a blind eye – report any suspicions anonymously today.
Meter cheating means tampering with the meter so it doesn’t record how much electricity or gas is being used or trying to bypass the meter completely.