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  • Akzo Nobel chemical spill contained, health department says
    A chemical spill at the Akzo Nobel plant in Huron caused a noticeable smell, but the chemical itself was contained at the plant and was successfully cleaned up, an official at the Erie County Health Department said Friday.   The 21-gallon chemical leak occurred overnight early Thursday and did not get outside a designed containment area. The spill is being blamed on a pump failure at the plant, located at 300 Sprowl Road in Huron.    Bob England, director of Environmental Health for the Erie County Health Department, identified the chemical as ethyl acrylate.   He said the spill produced a pungent odor that could be detected up to three-quarters of a mile away from the plant, formerly known as the Glidden plant.    "It's very volatile. It has a very low vapor pressure," England said. "It had the smell of acetone or nail polish remover. It was experienced in different locations based on wind direction."   England said he did not believe the spill created a public health issue. 
  • Green chemistry for nanoparticle synthesis
    The application of the twelve principles of green chemistry in nanoparticle synthesis is a relatively new emerging issue concerning the sustainability. This field has received great attention in recent years due to its capability to design alternative, safer, energy efficient, and less toxic routes towards synthesis. These routes have been associated with the rational utilization of various substances in the nanoparticle preparations and synthetic methods, which have been broadly discussed in this tutorial review. This article is not meant to provide an exhaustive overview of green synthesis of nanoparticles, but to present several pivotal aspects of synthesis with environmental concerns, involving the selection and evaluation of nontoxic capping and reducing agents, the choice of innocuous solvents and the development of energy-efficient synthetic methods.
  • Police: US Navy veteran in Canadian chemical case threatened police
    TORONTO — A U.S. Navy veteran at the center of an investigation into hazardous chemicals has been charged with uttering threats against police and possessing a dangerous chemical, police announced Thursday. Police allege 42-year-old Christopher Burton Phillips possessed a chemical called osmium tetroxide for a dangerous purpose. The discovery of hazardous chemicals prompted the evacuation of two neighborhoods in Halifax this week and an Ottawa hotel where Phillips was arrested. Royal Canadian Mounted Police were alerted to a suspicious package by a concerned citizen in Halifax, eventually leading to the evacuation of homes Tuesday morning. The package was determined to contain hazardous materials but not explosives, the RCMP said. Five homes elsewhere in Halifax were also evacuated as police found hazardous and volatile materials there as well. Ottawa police arrested Phillips at the Chimo hotel in Ottawa on Wednesday and linked the arrest to the discovery of the chemicals in Halifax. Police say they found no hazardous materials in the Ottawa hotel.
  • Lawmakers move to ban plastic scrubbing beads
    Lawmakers are looking to ban microbeads, barely visible plastic scrubbing grains used in personal care products, such as soaps and cleansers, from being sold in Vermont. Environmentalists and water quality advocates want them outlawed because the non-biodegradable plastic waste is washed down the drain and slips through nearly all of the state’s wastewater treatment plants. The House Fish and Wildlife Committee last week took up the bill, H.4, to prohibit the manufacture and sale of the products in Vermont, effective Jan. 1, 2017, and 2018, respectively. Illinois last year signed into law a similar ban on microbeads, but it takes effect one year later. The beads have been found in the Great Lakes. Many manufacturers already use alternatives, such as ground nuts, oatmeal and pumice, and are not opposing the ban. However, they urge Vermont to pass regulations that align with those in Illinois, including postponing the proposed implementation date by one year.
  • Four students, teacher injured in science experiment 51
    Four teenage students and their teacher suffered minor chemical burns when a class science experiment went awry at a North York school Thursday afternoon. Toronto Police say 17 students were participating in the experiment just after 3 p.m. in the parking lot outside Royal Crown Academic School on Bayview Ave., south of Finch Ave. E., when a liquid similar to a drain cleaner splashed onto some of the youth. “It looks like a little bit of the chemical they were using became airborne,” Toronto Police Staff-Sgt. Michael Butt said at the private school. There was some confusion in the immediate aftermath of the incident because police only learned about it when the kids — three girls and one boy — showed up at North York General Hospital with their teacher. Initial reports suggested there had been a chemical explosion, which sent cops and Toronto Fire crews — including a hazardous material team — racing to both the school and the hospital. However, Butt made it clear there was no explosion. He said it appears the class made “a bottle bomb or bottle rocket.” “It looks like they used some kind of drain cleaner or Drano,” he said. “It was put in a water bottle and I guess it expanded within the bottle.” Butt said under pressure, the liquid expanded and caused the bottle to spin around.
  • Massive fire, hazmat situation after plane crashes into Lakeland warehouse
    A small plane crashed into a warehouse in Lakeland Thursday morning causing a massive fire, according to the FAA. Two people were on the plane. The crash occurred around 8:20 a.m. at 5300 Allen K Breed Highway, a former plastics factory. At this point, it is not known who was in control of the plane, but friends say Geng was flying with an instructor to earn his certification to fly a twin engine plane because he just bought one. The plane crashed into a building owned by Key Safety Systems which manufactures automotive components. It was being used to store chemicals and powdered aluminum. It was unoccupied at the time of the crash and fire. One of the chemicals is Nitroguanidine, which is used in automotive airbags. When dry, it is explosive.
  • Chemical leak stopped at Mallinckrodt plant in St. Louis
    ST. LOUIS • About 20 to 30 gallons of a flammable chemical mixed with water overflowed and spilled at Mallinckrodt Inc. at 3600 North Second Street on Thursday night. The building was evacuated and the spill was being cleaned, according to the St. Louis Fire Department. Nobody was injured and nobody had to be treated. The chemical is toluene, which is used as a solvent. St. Louis Fire Department Capt. Garon Mosby said workers were mixing toluene with water as part of their normal manufacturing process when some spilled. Members of the hazardous materials task force were at the scene, but members of Mallinckrodt’s own fire department were taking care of the situation, said Mosby. “We followed standard procedures and took immediate actions at our St. Louis site to quickly and effectively address the situation,” according to a statement from Mallinckrodt. “The public was never exposed to any risk, and no property was damaged.
  • Meth lab found after sound of an explosion
    It was a report of a loud explosion that brought Monroe County Sheriff’s Deputy Dennis Graham to a house on Ridge Road Monday. It was the discovery of the makings of an alleged meth lab that led to the arrest of two men. Graham said the report of an explosion came in a few minutes after 8 p.m. and he arrived at the house at 8:20 p.m. and could smell a chemical odor in the area. Nathan Lee Clemmer, 47, Hicks Circle, Decatur, and Gary Dan Borden, 53, the resident of the house were there and Borden gave Graham permission to search the place. Graham did not report finding any evidence of finding a methamphetamine lab that had exploded, but said he did find a bucket near the house that contained about six feet of tubing, a pint of Coleman fuel and two dishes with white residue on them. When he went into the house, Graham said he found a one pot meth lab in the kitchen along with a bottle containing more Coleman fuel, a bottle of muriatic acid, a dish with a white residue on it, a gallon of more Coleman fuel, three more feet of tubing and coffee filters.
  • A tablet that shifts the clock
    When my parents bought our first color television in the early 1970s, they measured off 6 ft from the screen and insisted that we not watch from any closer distance. They feared blinding radiation emanating from the color cathode tube (indeed, in 1967 General Electric did recall 90,000 televisions that produced X-rays at thousands of times the recommended exposure level, but other than with this model, there was no demonstrable risk). Fast forward 40 y, and I see my teenage child spending most free moments in the evenings staring at her computer screen, phone, or tablet at close range. Is there risk in this? In PNAS, Chang et al. (1) provide compelling data that there may indeed be unappreciated effects and perhaps dangers of evening exposure to electronic screens, specifically demonstrating a negative effect on sleep in young adults following evenings spent reading from a tablet-based eReader.
  • IN-DEPTH RADIO :: UPDATE: Ammonia leak at Etobicoke arena :: News
    Toronto Fire have cleared an ammonia leak from the Park Lawn Park hockey arena. The call came in just after 5pm, to the Etobicoke arena on Park Lawn Road north of The Queensway. Toronto EMS officials told NEWSTALK 1010 one person was taken to hospital, but the extent of the injury is not yet known. Firefighters dressed in hazmat suits were going into the building to shut off valves that they believe responsible for the leak in the compression room of the arena and succeeded just before 8 p.m. Tuesday.
  • Grand Desert homes evacuated after Cole Harbour suspicious package incident
    A second evacuation order has been issued in the community of Grand Desert in connection to a suspicious package containing hazardous chemicals found on Lakeridge Crescent in Cole Harbour earlier Tuesday. Early Tuesday evening, RCMP tweeted that five homes on Dyke Road were being evacuated and residents told to relocate for the night. RCMP said they had found hazardous and volatile chemicals in a cottage on the road. The Canadian Red Cross says it will help find places for people to stay overnight if they don`t have a place to go. Residents have been warned they could be out of their homes for 24 to 48 hours. In the morning, RCMP said officers went door to door, advising residents within a 100-metre radius of 54 Lakeridge Cres. in Cole Harbour, of the order to evacuate as a "precautionary measure." According to RCMP, the package was discovered at 9:20 p.m. Monday at the home and they were called shortly after. The evacuation order was issued Tuesday morning. Late Tuesday afternoon, RCMP tweeted that the package was examined and determined it contained hazardous chemicals, but no explosives. The Hazmat team removed the package from the garage of the home.
  • Meth materials found in Cornell University performing arts building
    ITHACA -- Cornell Police responded Tuesday morning to a report of a suspicious backpack containing what appeared to be a quantity of household chemicals located in a common space within Risley Hall, 535 Thurston Avenue. Inside the bag, police found "materials commonly associated with the illegal manufacture of methamphetamine, " police said in a prepared news release. Cornell University Environmental Health & Safety and the New York State Police Contaminated Crime Scene Response Team determined the backpack and contents were consistent with chemicals used in the methamphetamine manufacturing process. By 5:00 p.m. Tuesday, an individual came forward claiming responsibility for the chemicals and is currently being interviewed by investigators. Police say the materials, including drain cleaner, fuel for lanterns or camping stoves, solvents such as ether and toluene, muriatic acid, table salt and common cold medications can cause chemical, fire and health hazards.
  • Surat chemical godown catches fire
    A massive fire broke out at the Mahalaxmi Industrial Godown in the Pandesara area of Surat on Tuesday. The chemical godown, which caught fire at around 10 am, had oil supplies used in textile looms and gas cylinders. As per reports, the reason for the fire was a short circuit. Four cylinders in the godown also exploded due to the fire. More than two dozen fire tenders rushed to the spot and were attempting to douse the flames. Further details are awaited.
  • Fire erupts at furniture plant
    SHARJAH:  A fire erupted at a furniture plant located in the industrial area No.4 of Sharjah on Tuesday morning. The reason behind the fire, which gutted the entire contents of the factory, is unknown. The products were reportedly flammable and that led to spreading the flames fast. No casualties were reported. The area was covered with a thick cloud of smoke that emanated from the fire. Colonel Ali Arhama Al Owaise, Director of Operations Department at the Sharjah Civil Defence, oversaw the extinguishing operations. Acting Director General of the Civil Defence in Sharjah, Colonel Khaled Kanoun Al Shamsi, said the operation room received a tip-off at 11:20am on Tuesday about a fire in a furniture factory. Immediately, the firefighting squads were rushed from the centres of Samnan, the headquarters, Muwailah and Mina, in addition to water tankers from the Sharjah Municipality.
  • Contractor cited following Marion plant death
    MARION, Ind. - The Indiana Department of Labor Occupational Safety and Health Administration (IOSHA) has issued a safety order and $12,600 penalty following the July death of a Marion worker, Call 6 Investigator Kara Kenney reported. The July 1 chemical explosion at a General Motors metal-stamping plant in Indiana killed contractor James L. Gibson, 48, and injured five other people, authorities said. Records show the state conducted inspections July 2 through Dec. 17 at Quaker Chemical Corporation on West 2nd Street in Marion. The order, obtained by Kenney Tuesday, shows the state cited Quaker Chemical Corporation for two “Serious” violations. IOSHA said Quaker did not establish and maintain safe and healthful work conditions and that “employees were exposed to a violent equipment over-pressurization from potential exothermic decomposition reactions due to the mixing of incompatible chemicals.”
  • Blast at Indian chemical factory kills 1, injures 4
    - One person died and four others injured at a chemical factory in the western Indian state of Gujarat after a blast caused by a short circuit, police said on Tuesday. The blast occurred on Monday at chemical maker Survival Technologies' factory located in an industrial park in the city of Ankleshwar, Paresh Hasoti, assistant sub inspector of Gujarat Industrial Development Corportation (GIDC) said. A short circuit in the weighing scale that was being used to measure chemicals caused the accident, Hasoti said, adding that the worker died of burn injuries. He said there had been no major chemical leak. The company, according to its website, makes speciality chemicals for industries such as pharmaceuticals, agrochemicals, petrochemicals and electronics.
  • Water Tests After Oil Spill in Glendive Reveal Toxic Chemical
    The first water tests in Glendive, Mont., shows high levels of a toxic chemical after an oil spill on Saturday. According to the city website, Benzene, which is a main component of crude oil, has been found in the water tested last night. The Dawson County Health Department is advising people not to drink or cook with municipal water. The city is trucking in clean water and there is 48 hours of water in reserve. Bridger Pipeline says one of its lines leaked oil for an hour before the leak was found and the line was shut in. The company estimates that up to 12,000 barrels or more than 50,000 gallons leaked.
  • Tyson to pay $539,000 for Missouri chemical spill
    JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — Tyson Foods Inc. will pay more than $530,000 for a chemical spill that killed more than 100,000 fish and caused a southwest Missouri town's wastewater treatment system to fail, Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster announced Tuesday. Koster sued the company last June after the discharge caused Monett's wastewater system to fail and contaminated nearby Clear Creek in Barry County. The discharge containing Alimet, a highly acidic animal-feed supplement, was discharged from Tyson's Aurora facility, eventually flowing through Monett's system and into the creek. The compound killed the bacteria that process wastewater effluent in Monett's plant, causing almost undiluted ammonia to flow into the creek. "Tyson's actions threatened the vitality of Clear Creek," Koster said in a statement. "While Tyson has taken steps to prevent similar environmental damage to the creek in the future, the penalties contained in this agreement hold the company accountable for the damage that occurred." Tyson officials said in a statement that the Arkansas-based company "deeply" regrets the spill and has worked hard with state and other authorities to solve any problems.
  • MENIFEE: Traffic accident causes acid spill, hazmat cleanup (UPDATE)
    A traffic accident triggered an acid spill in Murrieta, where a hazardous materials crew was summoned to help contain the toxic mess, say Riverside County Fire Department officials. A passenger vehicle and pool maintenace truck collided about 4:45 p.m. Monday, Jan. 19, at Briggs and Holland roads, about 2 miles east of I-215. Two people were hospitalized with what were described as moderate injuries. The impact also spilled muriatic acid, officials said in a written statement. The crews of two fire engines and a ladder truck were dispatched, followed by the hazardous materials unit.
  • WKOW 27 Local News: UPDATE: Cuba City PD: Chemical mixture consistent with crude explosives
    UPDATE (WKOW) -- Authorities in Cuba City say the presence of chemical mixtures consistent with crude explosives used to blow up mailboxes led to the closure of a gas station Sunday. Cuba City Police Commander Eric Lyons tells 27 News, emergency responders did treat a 17-year-old boy after he inhaled chemicals and discovered his family's truck was at the Kwik Trip station. Lyons says the two plastic containers with the mixtures were found in the bed of a pick-up in the gas station's parking lot. The Dane County bomb squad was called in and neutralized the chemical mixtures. ***** UPDATE (WKOW) -- Early Sunday evening, the Cuba City Police Department says a vehicle parked at the Kwik Trip sparked an investigation. Officers found two plastic bottles located in the bed of the pick-up truck with an unknown chemical mixture inside. It was determined the fire department and hazmat team were called, as well as the Dane County Sheriff's Department bomb squad. Officers removed all subjects from the store and secured the area as a precaution. The mixture inside the bottles was believed to be a mixture of common household chemicals, and deemed safe. The bottles were removed and the contents disposed of. Once the items were taken care of, the scene was rendered safe and the store reopened. No damage or any on-scene injuries occurred. The investigation is ongoing. Assisting in the resolution of the situation were: the Lafayette and Grant County Sheriff's Departments, Dane County Sheriff's Office, Cuba City Fire Department and Rescue Squad, Darlington Fire Department, Jo Daviess County (IL) hazmat team, Grant County Emergency Management, and Kwik Trip.
  • AGL unable to monitor CSG fracking chemical in Gloucester project
    The Baird government has been accused by Labor of trashing environmental safeguards by granting AGL permission to frack coal seam gas wells even before the company's monitoring for pollutants had been approved. AGL began hydraulic fracturing of four CSG wells at its pilot Waukivory project near Gloucester in late October. According its licence, the company must sample and analyse the concentration of certain pollutants. One of those pollutants is a biocide used to kill bacteria in the well, hydroxymethylnasulfate, also known as THPS or by its brand name Tolcide. In its December report, AGL said samples had been collected "in anticipation of the approved method" to analyse for Tolcide and concentration levels were not available. "This exposes as a lie claims by AGL and the NSW Government that the coal seam gas industry is highly and competently regulated," said John Watts from Groundswell Gloucester. "It seems that no testing for Tolcide was done during and after the fracking to measure whether this toxic chemical might have been escaping into the groundwater, creeks and rivers."
  • Guelph chemical plant evacuated
    A chemical plant in Guelph had to be evacuated Sunday morning. The Guelph fire department was called to AOC Resins & Coatings on Royal Road just after 8 a.m. The fire department says when they arrived they found steam coming from an 80,000 kilo vat containing phthalic anhydride, a chemical used to make resins. The fire department said they contacted chemical experts who said the chemical wasn’t explosive, but shouldn’t be inhaled and it can be corrosive. The heating system on the vat was shut down, and the tank was cooled from the outside with water. No one was hurt.
  • Two die in chemical factory blast in Satara
    SATARA: Two persons died in Talbid village in Karad after an ethanol container blew up in a chemical factory around 6.30pm when an electricity wire came in contact with the container. The wire was damaged due to short circuit just before the blast, Karad police station officials said. ... The victims were at the factory for cleanliness and maintenance works. A member of the Kumbhar family runs the factory. According to the police, they will visit the spot again for a detailed investigation.
  • Schumer: Outlaw Homemade Explosives
    U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer says he is introducing legislation to make it illegal to build homemade bombs.  The New York Democrat said Sunday that current federal rules could potentially allow someone to make homemade explosives without breaking the law. He says that the Boston Marathon bombing and the publication by terrorist groups of recipes for homemade bombs show the need to criminalize the activity. The senator says the legal loophole hinders law-enforcement efforts to stop acts of terror and violence. His legislation would outlaw bomb making, though exceptions would be made for businesses with a license to create explosives for legitimate uses.
  • The Record: Worker safety
    A FEDERAL investigation found that a series of mistakes led to a dangerous fire at an East Rutherford ink factory involving combustible dust in 2012. New Jersey needs stronger regulations to avoid potential disasters in the future. The U.S. Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board, an independent federal agency that looks at industrial chemical accidents and makes recommendations to governing bodies, released a report Thursday detailing the problems at the US Ink facility. According to the report, the design and installation of the new dust collection system was done so poorly that it overheated within a few days of being activated, ignited spontaneously and caused an explosion that then released a fireball on seven workers. Thankfully, no one died; the investigation showed that steps should have been taken to significantly increase the safety of the operation.