Evaluation of Public Health Hazards Associated with Chemical Accidents
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The ever-increasing volume and diversity of chemicals being extracted, manufactured, marketed, stored, used or dispersed as waste, create a growing likelihood for significant accidents involving the release of potentially toxic chemicals. It is not surprising, therefore, that an exponential increase in the number of chemical accidents has been documented (1). Chemical accidents may affect human, health causing mortality and morbidity in exposed people. illnesses caused by chemical accidents may be immediate or delayed.. Delayed illnesses are more difficult to be associated with the accident than the immediate ones. Such an association for delayed illnesses would require clinical surveys and epidemiological monitoring lasting for many years after the accident. Chemical accidents may also affect human activities and/or living organisms and ecosystems. Considering the potential damage which exposure to potentially toxic chemicals under accidental situations can cause to human health and environment, it is essential that every country develop mechanisms for effectively coping with such accidents. Most countries have some sort of emergency response system for natural accidents, but most of these systems are not prepared for the additional requirements for information and expertise associated with an accidental release of toxic chemicals. In fact, in such a case, it is also necessary to know the toxic, physical, and chemical properties of the chemicals released, the levels of risk involved in exposure of human beings, and possible ways to deal with them. This situation demands for a more adequate chemical emergency preparedness particularly in countries characterized by a rapid growth of the agro-industry, of mining and metal production and the chemical and energy transformation industries, where situations prone lo chemical accidents are more likely to occur...Digitalizado en septiembre del 2020
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