First, folks, if you’re interested in the chemistry job market and haven’t already seen the blog roundtable discussion this week, head on over to Chemjobber’s recap today (note that Leigh at C&ENtral Science’s Just Another Electron Pusher contributed to the discussion with a post on Too many PhDs?).
Now, chemical health and safety news from the past week:
- From the Blogosphere: OSHA should undertake an educational campaign on finding and fixing chemical exposures at The Pump Handle
and Another biodiesel fire at Risk and Safety Blog
- The Vision Council and the American Society of Safety Engineers released a brief on Eye Safety At-a-Glance: Protecting Your Vision At Work (pdf)
- Another bombhouse, this time in Connecticut? Nah, “just” fireworks
ernCarolina fines Tanner Industries $91,000 “for a string of emergency preparedness failures they say occurred before a fatal [ammonia] leak near its Swansea plant last year”
- OSHA fined WRR Environmental Services nearly $800,000 for health and safety violations identified in a fire investigation; “the fire was likely caused when an ignition source within a solvent sludge feed tank ignited vapors, blowing the roof off the tank and igniting its contents”
- Federal regulators report progress at Southern California nuclear plant
Fires and explosions:
- A third person has died from that Dec. 9 explosion at AL Solutions in West Virginia; the workers were handling titanium and zirconium, but the cause of the incident is still unknown
- Furfuryl alcohol exploded at a Dow Chemical site in Massachusetts
- Something caught fire at a state chemical examiner’s laboratory in India; “the samples that were destroyed were mostly of abkari cases, including illicit liquor cases, unauthorised possession of liquor and consumption of liquor in public places and other chemicals”
- Something in exhaust ductwork caught fire at Sun Chemical in Michigan
- Magnesium caught fire in a kiln in the arts center at the Universioty of Wisconsin, La Crosse
- Improperly stored household chemicals at an apartment complex in South Carolina, displacing 34 people
Leaks and spills:
- Something when a drum ruptured at Hawker Beechcraft–”a woman was in a room of the building where cabinets are installed into aircrafts when she heard a popping and crackling sound coming from a fire-proof cabinet. As she was trying to leave the room, one of the 55-gallon drums ruptured.” (A good example of why you shouldn’t wear earphones in the lab!)
- Ethanol at Tilbury Docks in the U.K.
- Ammonia at a factory in Johannesburg, South Africa
- Potassium cyanide at Tyco Electronics in the U.K.
- Sulfuric acid in a courthouse in Massachusetts
- On roads and railways–chemicals related to painting, muriatic acid, isophthaloyl chloride, and xylene