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Texas booms: Drugs and oil

America's economic might has many sources, but one of the most reliable has been oil. Texas is, of course, the epicenter of U.S. oil. The state's oil industry has gotten a big boost in recent years from the boom in shale oil in the western Texas.

With the surge in oil production has come "a parallel increase in substance abuse, drug crime and related social ills," according to Reuters.

The news service illustrated its point with the story of a 32-year-old West Texas oilfield worker who spent time in drug rehab to kick his methamphetamine addiction. And the rig worker was able to keep away from meth for about a year.

“It’s easy to get back into that mentality,” said the Midland man of his relapse. “I’d work 24 hours . . . I was just plagued with fatigue and needed something to improve my work ethic.”

He turned back to his nemesis, meth.

Substance abuse is common among industrial workers, Reuters says, but on oil rigs a drug habit can lead to workplace accidents that result in injuries and deaths.

The fatality rate in the oil industry is about three times the average of other lines of work, according to federal statistics.

Of course, other dangers lurk inside substance abuse, including overdoses, health issues and legal problems that begin with arrests.

Just as in the Rio Grande Valley, drug charges are frequently in the Midland news and those charged with drug crimes are frequently faced with lengthy periods of incarceration.

Before you talk to a prosecutor or police, speak with an Edinburg attorney experienced in drug defense, including cases involving meth, heroin, cocaine, marijuana and more.

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