From: Ralph Stuart <ras2047**At_Symbol_Here**MED.CORNELL.EDU>
Subject: [DCHAS-L] Chemical Safety Headlines From Google (14 articles)
Date: Fri, 22 Apr 2016 07:37:07 -0400
Reply-To: DCHAS-L <DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**MED.CORNELL.EDU>
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Chemical Safety Headlines From Google
Friday, April 22, 2016 at 7:08:15 AM

A membership benefit of the ACS Division of Chemical Health and Safety
All article summaries and tags are archived at http://pinboard.in/u:dchas

Table of Contents

EU BANS ENDOCRINE DISRUPTING HERBICIDES
Tags: Switzerland, public, release, response, pesticides

300-GALLON CHEMICAL SPILL IN FLAGLER BEACH CLOSES A1A
Tags: us_FL, transportation, release, response, sulfuric_acid

HAZMAT INVESTIGATION AT SPOKANE VALLEY HOME AFTER WOMAN REPORTS URANIUM
Tags: us_WA, public, discovery, response, explosives, uranium

OPCW CONVENES INAUGURAL EXPERTS GROUP MEETING ON GREEN CHEMISTRY
Tags: Netherlands, public, discovery, environmental

HUGE EXPLOSION & FIRE AT CHEMICAL FACILITY IN EASTERN CHINA (PHOTOS, VIDEO) " RT NEWS
Tags: China, industrial, explosion, response, gasoline

ANOTHER 'TOXIC SCHOOL' CASE LEADS TO CLOSURE OF CHINESE CHEMICAL WORKS
Tags: China, industrial, discovery, response, unknown_chemical

PEMEX BLAST: EXPLOSION AT MEXICAN CHEMICAL PLANT KILLS 24
Tags: Mexico, industrial, follow-up, death, petroleum

FDA OFFICIAL TESTIFIES ON LAB SAFETY AFTER SMALLPOX, ANTHRAX INCIDENTS
Tags: laboratory, discovery, environmental

FIRE HITS JAC NAPHTHA STORAGE TANK IN SINGAPORE
Tags: Singapore, industrial, fire, response, naphtha

FIRE SCORCHES TEMPLE CITY GARAGE; FIREFIGHTER INJURED
Tags: us_CA, public, fire, injury, other_chemical

TEEN, POLICE INJURED IN CHEMICAL INCIDENT IN COTTAGE GROVE HOME
Tags: us_MN, public, release, injury, unknown_chemical, suicide

EMERGENCY CREWS RESPOND TO CASSOPOLIS CHEMICAL FIRE
Tags: us_MI, industrial, fire, response, unknown_chemical

MEXICO CHEMICAL PLANT EXPLOSION KILLS 3
Tags: Mexico, industrial, explosion, death, unknown_chemical

EDITORIAL: LESSONS FROM WEST EXPLOSION, FORGOTTEN SO SOON
Tags: us_TX, industrial, follow-up, environmental, ag_chems, ammonium_nitrate


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EU BANS ENDOCRINE DISRUPTING HERBICIDES
Tags: Switzerland, public, release, response, pesticides

Three herbicides"amitrole, isoproturon, and triasulfuron"will be banned in the European Union, effective Sept. 30. An EU standing committee voted April 15 against renewing approval of the chemicals, citing potential groundwater contamination and risks to aquatic life.
Two of the herbicides"amitrole and isoproturon"have been heavily scrutinized because of their ability to mimic hormones and disrupt the endocrine system. The European Food Safety Authority previously raised concerns about the endocrine-disrupting effects of the two herbicides, as well as data gaps related to their toxicity.
EU officials had the option of banning the pesticides as endocrine disruptors. Under a 2009 EU pesticide regulation, endocrine-disrupting pesticides are not allowed on the EU market. But under that legislation, industry can apply for exemptions for "negligible exposure" and "serious danger to plant health."

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300-GALLON CHEMICAL SPILL IN FLAGLER BEACH CLOSES A1A
Tags: us_FL, transportation, release, response, sulfuric_acid

A truck carrying diluted sulfuric acid spilled some 300 gallons of the liquid at the intersection of State Road 100 and State Road A1A in Flagler Beach earlier this morning.

The spill soaked into the dunes on the east side of A1A, but caused no injuries. But because of the hazardous nature of the liquid, authorities closed A1A to traffic between North 4th Street and South 5th Street, Flagler Beach City Manager Larry Newsom said. The closure zone also includes side streets to Central Avenue.
Flagler County Fire Chief Don Petito said some 300 gallons spilled. The sulfuric acid was diluted by 50 percent. "It"s an inhalation hazard and it"s corrosive, so you can imagine what it can do to you," Petito said, likening the liquid to what"s found in vehicle batteries. "It"ll destroy any vegetation that it comes in contact with."
The company hauling the chemical is Dumont Chemical Company of Apopka. The truck was hauling several drums, only one of which fell and spilled. "I would prefer to see something that"s actually in writing that identifies what they"re hauling," Newsom said.

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HAZMAT INVESTIGATION AT SPOKANE VALLEY HOME AFTER WOMAN REPORTS URANIUM
Tags: us_WA, public, discovery, response, explosives, uranium

Thursday morning a woman in Spokane Valley called the fire department to ask for help getting rid of uranium and blasting caps. The woman reported that the materials had been in her home for at least 35 years because her husband and extended family had been involved in the mining business for 35 years in the Silver Valley.

The woman"s husband recently passed away and while cleaning out his belongings, she came across the hazardous material and contacted authorities so it could be removed safely.

The home is located at 15th and Walnut in Spokane Valley and the materials are now on the woman"s front porch.

The Spokane Valley Fire Department, Spokane County Sheriff"s Office and the Spokane Hazardous Materials Response Team are all on scene but they are in stand-by mode, waiting to hear from the federal government on how to safely remove the uranium. First responders have a 5ft. radius around the hazardous materials and once they are notified of the proper procedures to take, the Sheriff"s Office will go ahead and remove the blasting caps.

A radius of 1-2 blocks has been made around the home and residence nearby have been asked to shelter in place and use caution. Melanie Rose, the Community Affairs Officer with the Spokane Valley Fire Department says there"s no word on how long this Hazmat investigation will take and because they have to wait on instructions from the federal government, authorities could potentially be on scene all day.

---------------------------------------------

OPCW CONVENES INAUGURAL EXPERTS GROUP MEETING ON GREEN CHEMISTRY
Tags: Netherlands, public, discovery, environmental

The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) hosted the first Expert Group Meeting on Green/Sustainable Chemistry Applications in Industries Involving Toxic Chemicals in The Hague on 15 April 2016. The group includes representatives from industry, academia, and international organisations from across the globe.
OPCW Director-General, Ambassador Ahmet ?z14mc14, underlined the relevance of this Expert Group Meeting for the chemical weapons agenda by emphasising, "The promotion of peaceful uses of chemistry and a culture of safety and security among chemistry professionals is at the heart of the OPCW mandate." The Director-General also expressed his hope to get as close as possible to eliminating the need for toxic chemicals used in industrial and other applications.
During this inaugural meeting, the participants presented their activities in the field of green chemistry, including scientific research as well as educational and capacity building initiatives. They shared thoughts on avenues of collaboration between science and industry and they debated the needs, feasibility and benefits of application of green chemistry in industry.

---------------------------------------------

HUGE EXPLOSION & FIRE AT CHEMICAL FACILITY IN EASTERN CHINA (PHOTOS, VIDEO) " RT NEWS
Tags: China, industrial, explosion, response, gasoline

A powerful blast has struck a chemical storage in eastern China"s Jingjiang province, causing a massive ongoing blaze. A plume of black smoke is rising from the storage reservoir engulfed in flames. The factory stores chemicals and petrol.

China"s media outlet 163.com says there are a total of 42 reservoirs at the oil processing facility where the explosion occurred.

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ANOTHER 'TOXIC SCHOOL' CASE LEADS TO CLOSURE OF CHINESE CHEMICAL WORKS
Tags: China, industrial, discovery, response, unknown_chemical

Authorities have ordered the closure of a chemical industrial complex in eastern China after children at a local primary school came down with mysterious nosebleeds and skin complaints that their parents blamed on pollution.

The case comes just days after hundreds of students in the same region were revealed to have fallen ill, some severely, after attending a school built on a toxic waste dump.

According to reports in the Chinese media, more than 20 primary school children at the Hai"an Chengnan Experimental Primary School in Jiangsu province have complained of rashes and other medial complaints in recent days.

Residents of the surrounding area, which is about 200km north of Shanghai, told reporters they suspected toxic emissions from the industrial complex were responsible.

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PEMEX BLAST: EXPLOSION AT MEXICAN CHEMICAL PLANT KILLS 24
Tags: Mexico, industrial, follow-up, death, petroleum

(CNN)The death toll from a huge explosion at a Mexican petrochemical plant that forced the evacuation of surrounding neighborhoods has risen to 24, authorities said.

---------------------------------------------

FDA OFFICIAL TESTIFIES ON LAB SAFETY AFTER SMALLPOX, ANTHRAX INCIDENTS
Tags: laboratory, discovery, environmental

At a Congressional hearing on Wednesday, an official from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said that the agency has taken "direct and definitive actions" to improve laboratory safety after a new report highlighted deficiencies at a number of federal agencies in their oversight of bioresearch laboratory safety.

The report, issued by the Government Accountability Office (GAO), comes after recent incidents involving the mishandling of dangerous biological materials, including smallpox and drug-resistant strains of anthrax and plague at high-containment laboratories operated by federal agencies.

In one instance in 2014, an FDA researcher discovered twelve "overlooked" boxes which contained 327 laboratory samples, six of which contained Variola, the virus that causes smallpox.

In addition to the GAO report, Republican members of the House Energy and Commerce Oversight and Investigations subcommittee conducted their own investigation into FDA, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC) handling of the events.

Kicking off the hearing, subcommittee Chairman Rep. Tim Murphy (R-PA) chastised the agencies, saying, "These failures just defy common sense, this is a culture of complacency."

"If NIH or FDA had done just a little more than what their policies required, or thought outside the box just a little bit, those agencies could have discovered the smallpox vials years earlier," he said.

---------------------------------------------

FIRE HITS JAC NAPHTHA STORAGE TANK IN SINGAPORE
Tags: Singapore, industrial, fire, response, naphtha

SINGAPORE (ICIS)--Jurong Aromatics Corp"s (JAC) naphtha tank at Tembusu, Jurong Island in Singapore was the one that caught fire on Wednesday afternoon, traders said.

The tank is meant for storage of naphtha, a petrochemical cracking feedstock, they said.

Traders said the fire will not have any impact on the market as the company"s production facilities are currently idle.

The company could not be reached for comment.

According to the Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF), a fire at an oil tank on Jurong Island was reported to them at about 15:00 Singapore time (07:00 GMT) on Wednesday. Firefighters were deployed to contain the blaze at the site.

---------------------------------------------

FIRE SCORCHES TEMPLE CITY GARAGE; FIREFIGHTER INJURED
Tags: us_CA, public, fire, injury, other_chemical

TEMPLE CITY >> Firefighters made quick work of a fire in a residential garage that may have been sparked by the spontaneous combustion of varnish-soaked rags, authorities said.

The fire was reported just before 12:15 p.m. in a detached residential garage in the 5200 block of Halifax Road, Los Angeles County Fire Department Capt. Nick Yslas said.

Firefighters arrived within minutes, and declared the flames "knocked down" about 10 minutes after that, he said.

No one was home at the time, he said. One firefighter was hospitalized with heat exhaustion, the captain said. The injury was considered minor.

The officials cause of the fire remained under investigation, Yslas said.

But firefighters suspected that varnish-soaked rags, left behind after the residence varnished furniture in the garage, he said.

Rags soaked with oil or other chemicals can spontaneously ignite via chemical reaction in a phenomenon known as "pyrolysis," the captain explained.

Officials estimated the fire caused $65,000 worth of damage to the garage and its contents, Yslas said.

---------------------------------------------

TEEN, POLICE INJURED IN CHEMICAL INCIDENT IN COTTAGE GROVE HOME
Tags: us_MN, public, release, injury, unknown_chemical, suicide

COTTAGE GROVE " A chemical-related suicide attempt injured a teenager Wednesday, sent three Cottage Grove police officers to the hospital and required a bomb squad"s assistance, authorities said.

Police were called about 1:45 p.m. to a home in the 8600 block of Hale Avenue for a report of a suicidal 17-year-old male. The teen was found semi-responsive in the backyard with an unknown white compound on his shirt and pants. Police found a bucket near his feet and smelled a strong chemical odor.

The teen was treated and transported to United Hospital in St. Paul. His condition was not known Wednesday evening, police said.

Three officers who had responded to the call experienced symptoms from chemical inhalation and were transported to Woodwinds Hospital in Woodbury. They were treated and released.

Firefighters with protective breathing devices entered the home to make sure there were no other victims. Police said the firefighters found identified and unidentified chemicals believed to have been used in a suicide attempt.

---------------------------------------------

EMERGENCY CREWS RESPOND TO CASSOPOLIS CHEMICAL FIRE
Tags: us_MI, industrial, fire, response, unknown_chemical

CASS COUNTY, Mich. " Emergency crews repsonded to a chemical fire at a Cassopolis silicone manufacturer Wednesday night.

Cass County dispatch tells FOX 17 News that some type of chemical fire happened shortly before 9 p.m. at ICM Products, located at 805 Wolfe Avenue. Fire crews left the area around 10:30 p.m. after clearing the scene.

Two ambulances were sent to the scene, but no one was hospitalized.

Air quality tests are being conducted around the facility as part of the response.

---------------------------------------------

MEXICO CHEMICAL PLANT EXPLOSION KILLS 3
Tags: Mexico, industrial, explosion, death, unknown_chemical

An explosion Wednesday at a chemical plant in southeastern Mexico killed three people, sent dozens more to the hospital and released a toxic cloud into the sky.

The cause of the blast in Coatzacoalcos, in Veracruz state, was not immediately clear. The site is jointly run by the national oil company Pemex and a company called Mexichem to make chemicals used in plastic pipes.

Pemex said a total of 136 workers were hurt, including 88 who remained in the hospital early Thursday.

The company warned people to stay away from the site as a precaution, but said that the fire there was under control, the toxic cloud rapidly dissipated and that by Thursday the situation was under control with no risk to the public.

A fire at the same facility killed a worker in February. Weeks later, two people died and others were injured in a fire at a Pemex offshore oil platform in the Gulf of Mexico.

---------------------------------------------

EDITORIAL: LESSONS FROM WEST EXPLOSION, FORGOTTEN SO SOON
Tags: us_TX, industrial, follow-up, environmental, ag_chems, ammonium_nitrate

When it comes to dealing smartly with the risks of ammonium nitrate, some Texans have short memories.

Storing highly explosive ammonium nitrate fertilizer near schools, homes and other businesses has never been a good idea. Texas learned that the tragic way just three years ago. When a fire broke out at the West Fertilizer Co. warehouse, which stored an estimated 30 tons of the fertilizer, the resulting fireball was among the most destructive ever investigated by the U.S. Chemical Safety Board.

This newspaper and others rightly called for stricter rules to prevent another disaster.

After West, one would think other communities would require houses, schools and other population centers to be buffered from plants, that tougher rules would be followed to reduce the risk of an ammonium nitrate explosion.

So why have city and school district officials in Whitewright, a small town between Sherman and Bonham, backed a plan to build 48-unit low-income housing just 1,000 feet from El Dorado Chemical, a producer of ammonium nitrate? Why are there still up to eight Texas businesses selling fertilizer within a half-mile of a school, nursing home or hospital?

You can"t help but shake your head in disbelief. A U.S. Chemical Safety Board review couldn"t have been clearer about the causes of the West tragedy. The town, several federal agencies, the state and plant officials all missed opportunities to protect residents from catastrophic damage.

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