Occupational Health News Roundup

Another oil platform caught fire in the Gulf of Mexico, but this time the crew – 13 workers – was able to escape, and no injuries were reported. No oil spill was detected, either. The Mariner Energy platform was involved in both oil and natural gas production.

A Washington Post article on the fire notes that last year there were 133 fires or explosions on oil rigs in the Gulf. We’re just paying attention to them this year because of the BP/Deepwater Horizon disaster.

In other news:

Washington Post: Luis Uriza was the shift foreman in the San Jose mine in Copiapó, Chile when a mine collapse trapped him and 32 of his co-workers underground. He quickly took on a leadership role under the dramatically different circumstances, and has taken charge of things from scheduling regular sleep-wake cycles to rationing food.

Environmental Health Perspectives podcast: Physician and epidemiologist Philip Landrigan discusses his work with World Trade Center responders and how to apply lessons from the WTC cleanup to other disasters.

Greenwire: Syngenta, which manufactures the herbicide atrazine, has posted online years worth of emails from Tyrone Hayes, a UC Berkeley professor whose research has found atrazine to disrupt sexual development in frogs.

New American Media: A study of California manicurists using nearly 15 years of data, published in the American Journal of Epidemiology, finds no overall increased risk of cancer, though rates of lung and thyroid cancer were slightly higher. Continued study is needed because cancer can take many years to develop.

Department of Veterans Affairs: The VA is partnering with NIH to award a total of $6 million in grant funding to researchers studying the link between substance abuse and military deployments and combat-related trauma.

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