From: Ralph Stuart <rstuartcih**At_Symbol_Here**me.com>
Subject: [DCHAS-L] Chemical Safety headlines (11 articles)
Date: Wed, 17 Jan 2018 08:40:08 -0500
Reply-To: ACS Division of Chemical Health and Safety <DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**PRINCETON.EDU>
Message-ID: 582205DE-BF0B-4128-A9F9-70045B19915F**At_Symbol_Here**me.com


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Table of Contents (11 articles)

TOXIC FUMES WAFTING OVER MURRAY BRIDGE AFTER CHEMICAL LEAK
Tags: Australia, industrial, release, response, ammonia

APPLE SUPPLIER ACCUSED OF CHEMICAL SAFETY AND OVERTIME VIOLATIONS
Tags: China, industrial, discovery, response, unknown_chemical, illegal

AN ESSENTIAL GUIDE TO SAFETY EVALUATION FOR GRID-CONNECTED ENERGY STORAGE IN NORTH AMERICA
Tags: Canada, industrial, discovery, environmental, batteries

A PROPOSAL TO BAN A POTENTIALLY LETHAL CHEMICAL MIGHT CHANGE ‰?? OR CLOSE ‰?? 2 OIL REFINERIES IN SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA ‰?? DAILY BREEZE
Tags: us_CA, industrial, follow-up, response, hydrofluoric_acid

POLICE: EXPLOSION LED TO ONEIDA CITY METH BUST
Tags: us_NY, public, explosion, response, clandestine_lab

MORE SETTLEMENTS REACHED IN WEST, TEXAS, PLANT EXPLOSION
Tags: us_TX, industrial, follow-up, death, ammonium_nitrate

FIREFIGHTERS RESPOND TO MERCURY SPILL PHARMACY
Tags: New_Zealand, public, release, response, mercury

HAZMAT CREWS RESPOND TO SOUTHEAST BUSINESS IN FOOTHILLS INDUSTRIAL FOLLOWING AMMONIA LEAK
Tags: Canada, industrial, release, response, ammonia

CREWS RESPOND TO CHEMICAL FIRE IN ESSEX
Tags: us_CT, industrial, fire, response, unknown_chemical

PANEL BLAMES OPERATIONAL ERRORS
Tags: Nepal, industrial, follow-up, death, gas_cylinders

ADAPTING THE ADVERSE OUTCOME PATHWAY CONCEPT TO BIOMEDICAL RESEARCH
Tags: Europe, laboratory, discovery, environmental


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TOXIC FUMES WAFTING OVER MURRAY BRIDGE AFTER CHEMICAL LEAK
http://www.adelaidenow.com.au/news/law-order/toxic-fumes-wafting-over-murray-bridge-after-chemical-leak/news-story/c122b55bc22544923e2b7d033b100a31
Tags: Australia, industrial, release, response, ammonia

THE threat posed by a chemical leak at a food processing plant in Murray Bridge has reduced.

The leak caused ammonia fumes to waft over the town on Wednesday afternoon.

Four MFS and multiple CFS crews were dispatched to the facility, at the intersection of Eleanor Tce and Maurice Rd, after leaking ammonia tripped a fire alarm just before 5pm.

Specialist MFS hazmat units from Adelaide attended to help isolate and ventilate the building.

The MFS urged residents to close their doors and windows until the leak was isolated.

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APPLE SUPPLIER ACCUSED OF CHEMICAL SAFETY AND OVERTIME VIOLATIONS
https://www.engadget.com/2018/01/16/apple-supplier-accused-of-safety-and-overtime-violations/
Tags: China, industrial, discovery, response, unknown_chemical, illegal

Apple is still struggling to improve working conditions at its suppliers. Both China Labor Watch and Bloomberg report that Catcher, a key supplier for iPhone and MacBook casings, makes workers endure harsh safety conditions and unfair work terms in a factory in Suqian. According to observers and discussions with workers, the machines are not only loud, but spray fluid and metallic particles that frequently hit workers' faces (only some of which have access to safety goggles and gloves). Workers suffer health issues such as vision problems, irritation and discoloration. Beyond this, the facility reportedly pumps out wastewater that violates local safety levels, and workers return to cold dorms with no hot water or built-in showers.

CLW adds that the work requirements run afoul of local laws. Factory staff are legally supposed to work 40-hour weeks, but they're actually made to work 10 hours a day for 6 days each week. The scheduling approach also conveniently lets Catcher avoid paying double for overtime, as the law demands. Training frequently stopped at 4 hours when it's supposed to last 24 hours. Even quitting is difficult, according to the report. Contract workers may have to wait weeks to receive their expected wages, and the contracting company frequently refuses to accept resignations.

Both Apple and Catcher say they've investigated CLW's claims, but found no evidence to suggest that the working conditions had violated Apple's code of conduct. It's not clear why that's the case, though, given the multiple reports of illegal activity and Catcher's history of labor violations.

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AN ESSENTIAL GUIDE TO SAFETY EVALUATION FOR GRID-CONNECTED ENERGY STORAGE IN NORTH AMERICA
https://www.canadianmanufacturing.com/technology/essential-guide-safety-evaluation-grid-connected-energy-storage-north-america-206739/
Tags: Canada, industrial, discovery, environmental, batteries

The arrival of Energy Storage Systems (ESS) is helping solve a long-standing problem in the power sector‰??decoupling generation from consumption of electricity. System operators need the flexibility to store energy and dispatch it when required, and ESS can enable that. ESS also helps communities reap the benefits of clean power and make the grid more resilient by providing reliable back-up power during outages. These advantages are why ESS are among the fastest growing electrical power system products, but as a relatively new technology, it is critical that steps be taken to ensure safety is embedded into the design, testing, installation, commissioning, operation, maintenance, and decommissioning of these systems.


RISKS TO MITIGATE

While battery-based ESS is a proven and attractive technology, it can present safety hazards by itself or in association with other complex electrical systems. These include fire, explosion, leakage of electrolytes, venting of combustible and toxic gasses, burns from excessive temperature, as well as the potential for electrical shock and arc flash. Pressure, noise, moving parts, and sharp edges can pose mechanical risks. Toxic or hazardous substances are sources of risks related to chemical exposure, and unsafe chemical concentrations can present physical injury, explosion, and fire hazards.

A thorough understanding of ESS safety requirements and proper application is essential to help ensure risks are effectively identified and addressed to meet safety requirements.

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A PROPOSAL TO BAN A POTENTIALLY LETHAL CHEMICAL MIGHT CHANGE ‰?? OR CLOSE ‰?? 2 OIL REFINERIES IN SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA ‰?? DAILY BREEZE
https://www.dailybreeze.com/2018/01/16/a-proposal-to-ban-a-potentially-lethal-chemical-might-change-or-close-2-oil-refineries-in-southern-california-2/
Tags: us_CA, industrial, follow-up, response, hydrofluoric_acid

A potentially lethal chemical used at two Southern California oil refineries could be banned by regulators, a policy that refinery operators say could shutter their plants, cost hundreds of jobs and cause a spike in local gas and airfare prices.

In what could be one of the last public meetings on the issue, representatives from the South Coast Air Quality Management District, the Torrance and Wilmington refineries and the public are expected to meet Saturday to discuss the proposed change. The two refineries are believed to be the only petroleum processing plants in the state that use the chemical in question, modified hydrofluoric acid (MHF).

‰??This is a milestone‰?|. There‰??s some likelihood that the AQMD‰??s direction will come out of this meeting,‰?? said Mike Karlovich, a spokesman for PBF Energy which owns the Torrance refinery.

Modified hydrofluoric acid is a chemical compound used in the oil refining process to help meet air quality standards that call for blended forms of gasoline. The acid must be kept under high pressure to keep it in liquid form, as it boils at 67 degrees. When released, the acid can create a low hanging, pervasive toxic aerosol cloud that does not dissipate. Contact with the vapor can be fatal.

While the likelihood of a leak and gas plume are low, the results could be catastrophic.

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POLICE: EXPLOSION LED TO ONEIDA CITY METH BUST
http://www.localsyr.com/news/police-explosion-led-to-oneida-city-meth-bust/919503878
Tags: us_NY, public, explosion, response, clandestine_lab

ONEIDA, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) - Oneida City Police say a report of an explosion on Monday led them first to a smoldering fire, and then to a meth lab on Madison Street.

Police arrested two people within the apartment building, and evacuated the other tenants while they investigated the scene.

Investigators say they found equipment and chemical used in manufacturing methamphetamine, as well a quantity of the finished product.

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MORE SETTLEMENTS REACHED IN WEST, TEXAS, PLANT EXPLOSION
https://www.claimsjournal.com/news/southcentral/2018/01/16/282522.htm
Tags: us_TX, industrial, follow-up, death, ammonium_nitrate

The town of West, Texas, and several other plaintiffs have reached settlements and partial settlements of claims stemming from a deadly explosion in the central Texas town.
....
Waco-based state District Judge Jim Meyer canceled a trial set to begin today. The settlements are the latest among more than 200 claims filed in the aftermath of the West Fertilizer Co. blast that killed 15 people and left dozens injured. As the fire raged, the building‰??s roof collapsed and an explosion rocked the city of approximately 2800 people. The blast killed 10 firefighters and five civilians. Several firefighters suffered serious injuries.

Destroyed buildings included three schools, a West EMS building, a nursing home, an apartment complex and several single family homes. Three West Volunteer Fire Department fire trucks were also destroyed by the fire and explosion.

Insured losses as a result of the fire and explosion were estimated to be $100 million.

Plaintiffs‰?? spokesman and Waco attorney Steve Harrison tells the Waco Tribune-Herald the city and a nursing home reached settlements with CF Industries but have unresolved claims against the other major defendant in the case, El Dorado Chemical Co.

Harrison says settlement terms are confidential.

Defendants either manufactured or sold fertilizer that caught fire and exploded. They‰??ve denied any wrongdoing.

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FIREFIGHTERS RESPOND TO MERCURY SPILL PHARMACY
https://www.stuff.co.nz/southland-times/news/100629594/Firefighters-respond-to-mercury-spill-pharmacy
Tags: New_Zealand, public, release, response, mercury

Part of an Invercargill street was shut down on Tuesday after emergency services responded to mercury spill a pharmacy.

A fire communications spokesman said firefighters and a hazmat truck were called to a small mercury spill at the Windsor Pharmacy on Windsor St after 2.30pm.

The spill was caused by a broken thermometer.


John Hawkins/Stuff
Firefighters and a hazmat truck were called to the Windsor Pharmacy on Tuesday after a thermometer was broken spilling mercury.

Firefighters in chemical suits were seen entering the pharmacy.

The hazmat truck was called because the mercury was a toxic substance that need to be disposed of properly, the spokesman said.

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HAZMAT CREWS RESPOND TO SOUTHEAST BUSINESS IN FOOTHILLS INDUSTRIAL FOLLOWING AMMONIA LEAK
https://calgary.ctvnews.ca/hazmat-crews-respond-to-southeast-business-in-foothills-industrial-following-ammonia-leak-1.3761286
Tags: Canada, industrial, release, response, ammonia

No injuries have been reports following an ammonia leak in a southeast industrial park on Monday night.
Emergency crews were called to Sysco Canada in the 4600 block of 72 Avenue S.E at approximately 9:00 p.m. following reports of an ammonia leak.
EMS officials confirm that no one who was inside the building at the time of the leak required transport to hospital.
The cause of the leak has not been confirmed.

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CREWS RESPOND TO CHEMICAL FIRE IN ESSEX
http://wtnh.com/2018/01/15/firefighters-on-scene-of-chemical-fire-in-essex/
Tags: us_CT, industrial, fire, response, unknown_chemical

ESSEX, Conn. (WTNH) ‰?? Firefighters responded to a chemical fire on Westbrook Road in Essex on Monday afternoon.

Just after 1:30 p.m., firefighters confirmed to News 8 that a chemical fire took place at Nalas Engineering, located at 85 Westbrook Road. According to Connecticut State Police, the fire was contained inside of a chemical mixing area at the plant. The fire never reached the building or outside of the building; and no one was injured.

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PANEL BLAMES OPERATIONAL ERRORS
http://kathmandupost.ekantipur.com/news/2018-01-16/panel-blames-operational-errors.html
Tags: Nepal, industrial, follow-up, death, gas_cylinders

Jan 16, 2018-Operational errors by officials of Super Gas Udyog and ill-trained firefighters led to the massive explosion at the gas plant at Sukhachaina, Birgunj which claimed the lives of three firefighters last month, a fact-finding committee said in its report. The panel has ruled out technical errors.

The report submitted to the Department of Supplies Management (DoSM) said that the incident took place due to the negligence of the company‰??s workers when they were unloading the gas. On December 20, a massive fire broke out at Super Gas due to a leakage. It took firefighters almost nine hours to put out the inferno.

The next day, the Ministry of Supplies formed a probe committee led by DoSM Director General Kumar Prasad Dahal and consisting of representatives from the ministry, Nepal Bureau of Standards and Metrology (NBSM) and Nepal Oil Corporation to investigate the incident.

Dahal said human error more than technical error had caused the disaster. ‰??The workers lack safety knowledge,‰?? he said, adding that the massive explosion was caused after the fire spread to the large number of gas cylinders scattered all over the premises.

The report said that it was a managerial fault. Super Gas had received a shipment of cooking gas in gas bullets from Paradeep Refinery of Indian Oil Corporation on the day before the accident.

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ADAPTING THE ADVERSE OUTCOME PATHWAY CONCEPT TO BIOMEDICAL RESEARCH
https://ec.europa.eu/jrc/en/science-update/adapting-aop-concept-biomedical-research
Tags: Europe, laboratory, discovery, environmental

JRC scientists have explored the application of Adverse Outcome Pathways (AOP) to improve mechanistic understanding of human disease pathophysiology in order to advance biomedical research and inform the development of new drugs.

The AOP concept was originally developed to facilitate better use of mechanistic understanding in determining the toxicological properties of chemicals.

In particular, the goal has been to deliver reliable, animal-free methodologies for the hazard and risk assessment of chemicals, making greater use of in vitro and in silico methods.

In this context the AOP framework offers an efficient and effective means for capturing mechanistic knowledge, to link a molecular initiating event triggered by a chemical, through a sequence of key biological events, to an adverse health effect relevant for regulatory decisions.

In a recent publication JRC scientists suggest that the AOP concept could also have great value for biological research and drug discovery.

By giving examples of Parkinson's disease and impairment of learning and memory abilities in children, it is shown that the AOP concept can be applied to understanding human disease pathophysiology. Based on these two examples it is proposed to move towards mechanistically based taxonomies of human disease using the AOP concept.

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