Cannabis Farms

How to spot a cannabis farm (graphic with image behind of door with cannabis growing alongside)


Cannabis farms are premises which have been adapted to such an extent that normal usage would be inhibited. Usually present within the premises are items solely concerned for the production of cannabis, these could be (but not limited to):

  • High intensity lighting
     
  • Ventilation / extractor fans
     
  • Hydroponics systems

Cannabis cultivation refers to the practice and process of producing cannabis flowers via cannabis farms. Cannabis farms are very dangerous places and pose a serious risk of fire. Often the electricity meter has been bypassed and overloaded electrical circuits run close to water-filled pipes. Plants grown upstairs in a building can also cause floorboards to rot, presenting the danger of collapse.

In addition, it is also important to consider that sometimes the people working in the ‘farms’ are victims of human trafficking and working against their will.

 

How to spot a cannabis farm

The following material has been created to raise awareness of how to spot a cannabis farm. 

Cannabis Farms - signs to spot - A4 advice poster 

 

The text from the above PDF has been replicated below for your convenience :

Cannabis farms can crop up in any residential area, not just in homes but in the back of shops, warehouses and derelict buildings. 

It is vital you inform us of any information that will help us to identify them.

What to look out for?

  • Strong odours – Cannabis crops take around three months to grow, odours can be potent in the final weeks.
  • Covered up windows – Curtains always drawn up or windows covered/boarded up from the inside.
  • Excessive security measures – Excessive security measures such as extra locks or grilles on windows.
  • Lots of condensation – Cannabis plants need a greenhouse like environment to grow. Look out for condensation on the windows, especially in the summer months.
  • Lots of visitors – Frequent visitors at unsociable hours. 
  • Resident only visiting address twice weekly – Some cannabis growers are extremely organised and only tend to the plants a couple of times a week.  
  • Plant growing equipment – Look out for potential growers taking lots of plant growing equipment in and out of properties, such as soil/fertiliser and plant waste. 
  • Lot of cables and wiring – Cannabis farm set ups require lots of cables and wirings for all the equipment. If wires are still hanging from ceilings/walls after a week, this may be a sign of a grow. 
  • Excessive electricity bills (For Landlords) – Have the electricity bills suddenly spiked or dropped? It may be likely that the tenants are fiddling with the meter. 
  • Snow – Cannabis farms produce a lot of heat. Be wary of a property without a snow-covered roof.  
  • Bright lights day and night – Cannabis plants need light to grow, look out for properties with bright lighting. 
  • Buzz of ventilation – The constant noise of a fan could be for ventilation for cannabis grows.
  • Vulnerable adults – Sometimes foreign nationals are forced to tend to cannabis farms and are victims of human trafficking/modern slavery. 

Please help us to help you by reporting anything suspicious to West Yorkshire Police on: www.westyorkshire.police.uk/report-it

Alternatively, you can report anonymously to CrimeStoppers on 0800 555 111 or www.crimestoppers-uk.org

 

Cannabis Farms - signs to spot - A5 leaflet

 

The text from the above PDF has been replicated below for your convenience :

How to spot a cannabis farm 

Cannabis farms can crop up in any residential area, not just in homes but in the back of shops, warehouses and empty buildings. 

It is vital you inform us of any information that will help us to identify them.

What to look out for?

  • Strong cannabis odour    
  • High electricity bills (for Landlords)    
  • Lots of visitors        
  • Resident only visiting twice weekly 
  • Vulnerable adults        
  • Excessive security measures
  • Lots of condensation/no snow on rooftops 

  • Covered up windows    

  • Buzz of ventilation

  • Bright lights day and night

  • Plant growing equipment

  • Lots of cables and wiring         

Please help us to help you by reporting anything suspicious to West Yorkshire Police on: www.westyorkshire.police.uk/report-it

You can also report anonymously to CrimeStoppers on 0800 555 111 or www.crimestoppers-uk.org

 

Alternative Languages

We have also translated the material in a number of languages:

If your preferred language is not available, you may wish to use the Google translate tool available at the top of this website.

 

Advice for Landlords

Guidance for Landlords has also been created to raise awareness of cannabis farms and encourage landlords to carry out deeper checks in the hope that it will prevent their property from being exploited.

The text from the above PDF has been replicated below for your convenience :

 

Landlords - be aware of the potential signs that a resident is growing cannabis in your property 

Cost to you, the landlord

Loss of rent

  • Reputational loss
  • Financial loss to rectify damage
  • Large utility bills/rectification fees
  • Police and Council Investigations
  • House insurance providers may not pay out for damage to property


Single Male Tenants

Evidence shows that most cannabis farms in West Yorkshire are properties that have been rented by single males:

Male – 86%    Female – 14%

The most common age group were 30-39 (36%), followed by 20-29 (28%).


Prevention – Cannabis Farm Aware

  • Outline within your tenancy agreement that you will check the property once in an 8-10 week period - a check in this period does not allow time to grow a cannabis crop. 
  • Check photographic identity and complete any in-depth rental checks
  • Leave a contact number with the neighbours of your rental property and check in with them every so often. 


Are Your Residents Evasive?

  • Not responding to calls, visits or other correspondence.
  • Not allowing essential services in, gas, electricity & water. 
  • Not allowing or turning up for property inspections. 
  • Third parties paying rent and utilities at the address. 


Cash Payments?

Many people involved in cannabis farms will want to pay cash to avoid police detection. They may also pay a significant amount of rental payments upfront to reduce interactions with Landlords. Some may also offer to cover the cost of any building maintenance for this same reason. 


Other signs to look out for

  • Plant growing equipment being taken into property
  • Strong odours
  • Bright lights day and night
  • Buzz of ventilation 
  • Covered up windows
  • Lots of condensation
  • Excessive security measures put in place
  • Resident being evasive and/or only visiting property once or twice a week
  • Lots of cables and wiring
  • Excessive electricity bills

Please help us to help you by reporting anything suspicious to West Yorkshire Police on: www.westyorkshire.police.uk/report-it 

You can also report anonymously to CrimeStoppers on 0800 555 111 or www.crimestoppers-uk.org 

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