Hawke’s Bay company Drug Smart has become the first in New Zealand to gain IANZ accreditation to test for methamphetamine contamination
In 2017, Standards New Zealand published a new standard on the testing and decontamination of meth-affected properties (NZS8510) which required rigorous validation of sampling kits and proof of appropriately trained samplers.
Drug Smart, which provides meth testing along the East Coast and lower North Island, is the first company to be accredited under that Standard.
The Havelock North-based family business is run by Warren Murdoch, a policeman for 34 years, and his son, Sam. www.drugsmart.co.nz
Managing director Sam Murdoch says the application to International Accreditation New Zealand (IANZ) was a very thorough process and Drug Smart was proud to be the first in the country to gain accreditation.
“It was good to be scrutinised in such a way because, now we’ve got the IANZ accreditation, it gives assurance to our clients they are in safe hands. Given the clientele we have, it is definitely a bonus for us to have IANZ on our reports and our website.”
His company tests between 50 and 100 properties each month for meth contamination, and its clients include national government organisations, insurance companies and loss adjusters, as well as property management companies and individual property owners.
“We believe the New Zealand public deserves the highest quality testing, which is why we sought IANZ accreditation and why we’re committed to operating in accordance with the new Standard,” says Murdoch.
IANZ’s general manager of accreditation services Phil Barnes says the new standard requires complete independence between the test providers and the cleaning companies. In the past, conflict of interest problems arose with the same companies doing both.
“Some property owners ended up spending a small fortune, sometimes tens of thousands of dollars, on decontamination that wasn’t actually necessary.
“Now, for a company to claim compliance with the Standard and gain accreditation, they have to demonstrate to IANZ that their meth testing samplers have appropriate training and competence and that their testing kits are proven to be reliable.”
Barnes says: “Drug Smart were meticulous in their responses to the in-depth assessment process and we’re very pleased to have granted them the first meth testing accreditation in New Zealand.”