What a Way To Go…

I found this article while looking at the News on CNN.com

http://www.cnn.com/2007/US/07/04/methane.deaths.ap/index.html

The bigger question I have though is not about Poo safety, but are these people now eligible for Darwin Awards?

Happy 4th.

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One response to “What a Way To Go…

  1. Either CNN got it wrong, or the people initially reporting this didn’t check their facts.

    Methane is non-toxic. In cases like this the killer is H2S. It is the bane of oilfield workers, sanitation personnel, and farmers worldwide.

    When the concentration is past 800ppm, it only takes one whiff to put you into a coma and results in death within seconds. Due to the sudden onset of poisoning, rescue workers often mistake it for a heart attack.

    While working on sewer systems or storage tanks, there is a possibility of H2S pockets being built up at the opening. Simply opening the manhole cover is enough to kill you. All that your co-workers see is you falling headfirst 20 feet down.

    They don’t know that you are already dead before you land, so they come running to help.

    H2S accidents are famous for killing rescue workers and paramedics.

    It is rarely a single victim killer, simply because our first instinct is to run and help a person who falls. This is quite the opposite of a “Darwin Award”

    The only first aid response for a smaller dose of poisoning is to administer amil nitrite gas, or provide sodium nitrite injections.

    The average farmer does not have either on hand. In fact few paramedics are equipped for such emergencies unless they have oilfield experience.

    Here in Canada, sanitation workers and oilfield personnelle all require certification in a program called “H2S alive”.

    They are trained on monitoring equipment, the use of self-contained respirators, and most importantly they are taught to RUN AWAY when they see a co-worker get dizzy and fall.

    This accident was the result of poor education and safety training. It involved one of the most dangerous naturally occurring poisons on the planet.

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