Date: Mon, 19 Dec 2005 12:34:17 -0500
Reply-To: "Novodoff, Jack" <novodoff**At_Symbol_Here**UMICH.EDU>
Sender: DCHAS-L Discussion List <DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**LIST.UVM.EDU>
From: "Novodoff, Jack" <novodoff**At_Symbol_Here**UMICH.EDU>
Subject: Re: Confusing risk message?
Comments: To: Ralph Stuart

When we instruct folks to drive a car, regardless of whether it is state law, we insist the appropriate safety gear, seat belts, be worn at all times. For most individuals, this message lasts until they cease driving. I certainly believe that it is important to develop good habits while working in a laboratory, be it with soap bubbles or sulfuric acid. You cannot begin at too young an age to encourage the use of appropriate PPE. It is hoped that the young ladies in the picture were instructed on the importance of wearing PPE when working in any laboratory situation. Thanks Jack -----Original Message----- From: DCHAS-L Discussion List [mailto:DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**LIST.UVM.EDU] On Behalf Of Ralph Stuart Sent: Monday, December 19, 2005 11:56 AM To: DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**LIST.UVM.EDU Subject: [DCHAS-L] Confusing risk message? I received the December 12 issue of C&EN news today and found the cover photo to be a rather confusing risk message. It shows two high school girls participating in National Chemistry Week activities with lab coats and safety glasses on. They are using straws to blow air into liquid soap to form bubbles. My gut reaction in looking at the picture was "oh my god, they're mouth-pipetting; I thought we got rid of that last century". Looking at the picture more closely, I realized what was going on and understood why they wanted to use straws for better pressure control. However, my question is "Are the lab coats and glasses appropriate in this setting?" By using these ppe in this situation, are the girls building good lab habits, or perhaps, receiving a confusing risk message that says liquid soap is as dangerous as any other chemical you might work with? When they get to college chemistry lab are they less likely to use ppe when working with a strong corrosive because they "too old" for high school habits now? I don't expect a clear answer, but I'd be interested in hearing CHAS people's thoughts... - Ralph Ralph Stuart, CIH Environmental Safety Manager University of Vermont Environmental Safety Facility 667 Spear St. Burlington, VT 05405 rstuart**At_Symbol_Here** fax: (802)656-5407

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