So - I have a general question about this incident (and others like it).
While I understand that many of these incidents are done by what I would term "chemical professionals", meaning people who either teach chemistry at some capacity or are involved in the chemical industry, how many of these incidents are started by people who are not directly in our industry at all?
I ask because I have made some observations here at my facility over the years that have troubled me. We have a strong outreach presence here at DePauw. Some of it is sponsored by myself (and I'd like to think we think of safety first), but much of it is sponsored by University clubs, many of which never talk to me before doing something. Students go in to the community and do a demo of some sort using standard things they can purchase at local stores. They are supposed to plan months ahead of time, but as is typical with their generation they usually wait until the last minute, then they call up a you-tube video on something they want to show and they go get what they need for it, with little thought or practice before the incident occurs. Often times they do crazy demos with no thought of safety (it just doesn't cross their mind), and they often get away with it with no casualties. I'm never in the loop on most of these, I just hear of them second hand from various p!
eople. If they do something I don't approve of I do try to get word back to them, but it's always an after the fact sort of thing.
I don't know at all if this incident was like this. Probably not. But my point is that regulation of people who aren't going to read the rules is difficult at best. If they never ask for my help, it's impossible for me to know that they are even doing something. Even if we instill a University policy, policing that policy is not going to be an easy thing in cases like this. People who are not receiving these emails often have no idea that there is even a problem doing such a thing. These demos are all over you tube.
What do we do about that? How do we educate those who will never see our message? I'm just asking, not trying to stir up a hornets nest (which I did last week by the way, wow, I know what that means now).
Good luck all. Stay safe
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