A First Look At The 600K Report: Commercial Chemical Incidents In The United States, 1987 - 1996
<-- Terrorism and Industrial Chemicals
ATSDR Report: Industrial Chemicals and Terrorism: Human Health Threat Analysis, Mitigation and Prevention.
Risk Management Plan Resources from the National Safety Council.
Background on Risk Management Plans (RMP and "Worst Case Scenarios").
Chemical Plants Are Feared as Targets: Concerns grow that terrorists might hit toxic inventories.
Update: On December 22, 2000 the Chemical Safety Board refocused their work and withdrew the 600K Report claiming that it had data problems. Their website or recent 5-year plan makes no mention of updating or correcting this report. It remains here for research and education purposes.
Another Study: Similar analysis from Wharton School researchers shows that from 1994 through
1999, these accidents injured nearly 2,000 people and required the evacuation of
more than 200,000 nearby residents. Property damage from the 1,913 chemical
accidents the industry reported over those five years: $1 billion. The study using Risk Management Plan (RMP) data says, "In two cases, it was discovered that a facility had changed its [RMP] report ... In one case, 9 public deaths had been reported and in the other case 5 deaths ... in both cases, these reports were resubmitted and changed to 0 deaths." Click here to download, "Accident Epidemiology and the U.S. Chemical Industry: Preliminary Results from RMP*Info."
Download 600K Summary
Report Here (1.43MB, PDF Format).
A First Look At The 600K Report: Commercial Chemical Incidents In The
United States, 1987 - 1996
Special Congressional Summary Final Document Available in March
Why The 600K Report? Why, indeed? Why does the industrial equivalent of
two 737 airplanes "crash" year after year, killing all passengers (256
people)? And why does no one seem to notice? While these remain questions
today, the United States recently embarked on a journey whose destination
is precise answers to the causes of and means of preventing chemical
incidents . . .over 600,000 from 1987 through 1996 . . . , answers to help
government and business take steps benefiting everyone.
Commercial chemical incidents occur tens of thousands of times each year,
often with devastating and exorbitantly expensive consequences. They are
indiscriminate in their effects. Workers, companies, the public, emergency
response organizations, and all levels of government pay the figurative
and literal price. Yet, until now and with few exceptions, chemical
incidents have been invisible. Perhaps it is due to their pervasiveness,
or to the common tendency to overlook what is taken for granted. More
likely, however, their invisibility results from our nation's lack of
definitive knowledge about the picture of chemical incidents in the United
States. The 600K Report, the product of the unprecedented analysis of
reports of chemical incidents recorded in five federal government
databases, and the baseline it establishes fill that gap. It is the first
federal study that casts a wide net over the problem, looking at its
magnitude and characteristics, and using . . .and highlighting the
limitations of . . .the government's own acknowledged "best" databases of
reported chemical incidents at fixed facilities and during transit.
The 600K Report was prepared by the Chemical Safety and Hazard
Investigation Board (CSB), an independent, nonpartisan, quasi-legislative
agency that performs a unique role within and, domestically and
internationally, on behalf of the federal government. Created as part of
the Clean Air Act (Act), 42 U.S.C. § 7412, the CSB began operations in
Fiscal Year 1998. Its mission, accomplished through a variety of programs
and partnerships, is clear, focused and measurable: reduce the occurrence
of chemical incidents, thereby protecting workers, the public and the
environment and lessening associated economic consequences.
The CSB assists Congress with public policy analysis through its technical
work, its evaluation of the performance and effectiveness of federal
chemical safety programs, and its assessment of the cost and benefits of
those programs to government and business. It makes recommendations for
administrative and regulatory changes to other agencies' programs to
enhance their effectiveness, and the overall effectiveness of the federal
government, in promoting chemical safety. The CSB's work is done in
support of Congressional direction contained in the Act, that it is to
issue periodic reports (1) recommending measures to reduce the likelihood
or consequences of accidental releases and (2) proposing corrective steps
to make chemical processing, handling and storage as safe and free from
injury as possible.
Many parties have a stake and role in preventing chemical incidents. This
report, and the complementary information the CSB will produce in the
future, is designed to give those parties a common basis on which to
productively discuss and work toward the resolution of chemical safety
concerns. Their collective, cooperative efforts can make the United States
the world leader in chemical incident prevention . . . and the workplace
as safe as an airplane.
<-- Terrorism and Industrial Chemicals
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