Newton meth lab detonates

Suspect, possibly scorched, escapes on bike.

Surrey RCMP responded to an explosion in a basement in Newton Monday at 8:30 p.m.

An explosion in a basement meth lab rocked neighbours in Newton Monday evening and left a plume of smoke and the sharp odour of chemicals hanging in the air.

Witnesses saw a white man in his mid-30s flee the area on a bicycle, while yelling at them to get away from the house in the 7200 block of 140A Street.

An RCMP spokesman described the clandestine drug lab as a “pretty small operation” with no apparent links to organized crime.

The suspect, believed to be the basement tenant, had not yet been found, but police believe he may have suffered burns.

The Surrey Fire Department hazardous materials team responded, along with RCMP drug section members and federal drug lab investigators.

They found unstable chemicals typically used to make methamphetamine.