Journal of Chemical Health & Safety, July-August issue
Aug27

Journal of Chemical Health & Safety, July-August issue

Here’s what’s in the July-August issue of the Journal of Chemical Health & Safety: Editorial: Re-evaluating an old prejudice, by Harry J. Elson Why is weapons grade plutonium more hazardous to work with than highly enriched uranium?; from Michael E. Cournoyer, Stephen A. Costigan, and Bradley S. Schake (Los Alamos National Laboratory) Occupational exposure to nanomaterials: Assessing the potential for cutaneous...

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#Chemsafety programming at #ACSBoston
Aug12

#Chemsafety programming at #ACSBoston

The 250th ACS National Meeting starts on Sunday in Boston. Here’s what’s planned for chemical and laboratory safety; the Division of Chemical Health & Safety has its usual CHAS-At-A-Glance ready for printing. You can also find CHAS and the Committee on Chemical Safety in the Expo at booth 425. SUNDAY Morning Division of Chemical Health & Safety Executive Committee meeting; here’s the agenda book; breakfast at...

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Chemical safety through history
Aug05

Chemical safety through history

From Chemical Heritage Magazine‘s Summer 2008 edition, here’s a piece about historical chemical incidents, from a potassium explosion temporarily blinding Joseph-Louis Gay-Lussac to several chemists dying from hydrogen fluoride and fluorine poisoning: “Not-So-Great Moments in Chemical...

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Process Safety newsletters
Aug04

Process Safety newsletters

From AIChE’s Center for Chemical Process Safety, the “Process Safety Beacons” for the last few months: Mechanical Integrity – “You get what you inspect, not what you expect!” Conduct of Operations – “What are your plant’s critical safety control limits?” Know When to Leave! – “Know what can go wrong in your plant, when you should evacuate, and when to shelter in...

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Learning from oil spill disasters
Jul22

Learning from oil spill disasters

In last week’s issue of C&EN, I had  a story that looked  back at the Exxon Valdez and Deepwater Horizon oil spills, with an eye toward lessons learned for addressing future spills. I focused on the environmental clean-up, not on the process safety problems that led to the incidents, but there was one talk from the University of New Hampshire Oil Spill Response Forum held last fall that I wanted to flag here. The speaker was...

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Unequal risk
Jul21

Unequal risk

I’m out of the office this week, so here’s some reading: The Center for Public Integrity’s multi-part series called “Unequal Risk,” focusing on worker chemical exposures. A few examples: Slow-motion tragedy for American workers The impenetrable world of Mark Flores, the disabled son of a woman who was exposed to lead and methanol when working at an electronics company pregnant A history of OSHA: After 44...

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Will a new overtime threshold affect postdocs for the worse?
Jul15

Will a new overtime threshold affect postdocs for the worse?

From a discussion about whether the Department of Labor’s proposed expansion of overtime eligibility will raise postdoc pay, a rather worrying comment: At many Uni’s, postdocs are classified in some nebulous category somewhere between grad student and indentured servant. My university (top 5 in total NIH funding) does not pay payroll taxes or withhold federal taxes, thus furthering their claim that we are not employees,...

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DuPont named severe violator by OSHA
Jul10

DuPont named severe violator by OSHA

The Department of Labor announced yesterday that the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) has placed DuPont in its Severe Violator Enforcement Program, following a 2014 methyl mercaptan leak that killed four workers and injured a fifth at a DuPont plant in La Porte, Texas. In May, 2015, OSHA cited DuPont for 14 safety violations and proposed fines totaling $99,000. The citations were for: 29 CPR 191...

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