This article is a US Government work and, as such, is in the public domain in the United State of America.
Morbidity and mortality from hazardous materials events in the personal services industry, 1993–2001: A follow-up report from the Hazardous Substances Emergency Events Surveillance (HSEES) system†
Article first published online: 12 APR 2005
Published 2005 Wiley-Liss, Inc., A Wiley Company
American Journal of Industrial Medicine
Volume 47, Issue 5, pages 419–427, May 2005
How to Cite
Horton, D. K., Berkowitz, Z. and Kaye, W. E. (2005), Morbidity and mortality from hazardous materials events in the personal services industry, 1993–2001: A follow-up report from the Hazardous Substances Emergency Events Surveillance (HSEES) system. Am. J. Ind. Med., 47: 419–427. doi: 10.1002/ajim.20165
- Issue published online: 12 APR 2005
- Article first published online: 12 APR 2005
- Manuscript Accepted: 28 FEB 2005
- hazardous materials releases;
- industry categories;
- hazardous materials victims;
- injury-prevention strategies
An estimated 8% of acute hazardous materials (HazMat) events that occur annually in the United States involve victims. Little information is available in the literature pinpointing which industries are associated with these acute events.
Data from the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry's Hazardous Substances Emergency Events Surveillance (HSEES) system were analyzed to determine which industry categories had the highest proportion of events with victims. These data were collected from 17 state health departments that participated in the HSEES system from 1993 through 2001.
During 1993 through 2001, 53,142 HazMat events occurred, of which 51,989 involved actual releases. Of these events with actual releases, 4,324 (8.3%) involved victims. Of the 14 major industrial categories analyzed, personal services—with 1,311 total events, including 468 with victims—had the highest major industrial category proportion of events with victims (35.7%). This high proportion of events with victims was associated mainly with the following three personal services subcategories: private households; laundry, cleaning, and garment services; and hotels and motels. Most of the victims injured in personal services events involved members of the general public. The most frequently reported symptom was respiratory irritation. The causal factors leading to most releases were operator error, followed by deliberate/illegal damage.
Targeting the personal services industries with appropriate prevention strategies may be an effective way to help begin reducing the high proportion of events with victims in this category. Am. J. Ind. Med. 47:419–427, 2005. Published 2005 Wiley-Liss, Inc.