Date: Mon, 2 Jan 2012 11:23:19 -0500
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From: "Secretary, ACS Division of Chemical Health and Safety"

Subject: Re: 2011 Hazmat Events summary
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I'm asking off-list to reduce the clutter; feel free to respond/forward to the list if you think appropriate.

I suspect that other people have similar questions; thanks for sending them.

- In the "Sector count" the term "laboratory" refers to any lab no matter if it is private or public, correct.  Related, if an event happened in, say, "education" that means a non-lab event such as a spill in the hallway, etc, correct?

That's correct. Most education events occur in secondary schools, but some are in higher ed. Within the lab group, the second set of "sector" numbers is based on secondary school, research (higher ed), teaching (higher ed), and industrial (which is really non-school). There was a fair amount of ambiguity in many reports as to whether a higher ed response was for a research or teaching lab, so I made an educated guess, based on the chemicals involved and the description of the event.

- In the "type" since it appears you don't double count, is the statistic tied to the most serious outcome?  I.e. if you have an event with injuries and deaths it goes in the "deaths" category only, correct?


- Do you know why there are 151 Lab events in the total count, but only 148 broken down in your second break out?

As I was reviewing the lab events, I found some duplicate reports, which I removed from the lab list, but didn't go back and amend in the overall list. I also removed all the illegal drug lab reports from the lab sector.

- And finally, is it possible to get the data for US events only, or would that be too difficult/time consuming to break out?
I began working through those numbers, but the results didn't change very much and I felt that the international events provided some interesting lessons, although they are skewed toward more extreme events, particularly in China and India.

- Ralph

Ralph Stuart
Division of Chemical Health and Safety
American Chemical Society

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