FYI, our incoming chair, Sammye Sigmann has a new article published today in J Chem Ed
on an issue that has been discussed on this list several times. The title and abstract are below.
Playing with Fire: Chemical Safety Expertise Required
ABSTRACT: Over the past 20 years 164 children and educators have been reported as injured in demonstrations using flammable solvents. The injuries were the result of flash fires, flame jets, and projectiles which occurred once control was lost by the presenter. ‰??The rainbow demonstration‰?? using methanol as the solvent has by far been the most problematic. Numerous stakeholders and concerned individuals have sounded the alarm for years in an effort to increase awareness in the educational community about the substantial risks associated with performing demonstrations using solvents, but reaching the target audience has proved difficult. Punitive damages such as monetary awards for those injured and job terminations have held schools and teachers accountable, but more effective safety training and substantive safety education in the K‰??12 preteacher curriculum is also needed. This article seeks to present the totality of issues surrounding the problem and create a referen!
ce document that can be easily disseminated to support ongoing efforts in preventing future incidents.
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