3D printing: a new industrial revolution
As 3D printing is a relatively new industry, not much is known about the possible impact on safety and health at work.
This expert review provides a brief introduction to 3D printing and examines the risks involved in it.
The reader will be left with a better understanding of the issues and of the changes needed to ensure that this new industry is safe and healthy to work in.
Raluca Aurora Stepa and Klaus Kuhl, The Cooperation Centre (Kooperationsstelle), Hamburg
Edited by: Sheona Read and Craig Poland, Institute of Occupational Medicine, Edinburgh
Nanomaterials are structures at the nanometre-scale (a nanometre is 10 power of -9 of one metre), a scale, comparable to that of atoms and molecules.
Evidence shows that the same substance behaves differently at nanoscale compared to its larger-scale counterpart. This allows the development of light-weight materials with high strength, high conductivity or high chemical reactivity. Nanotechnologies
Magne Bråtveit, Rune Djurhuus, Jorunn Kirkeleit and Bjørg Eli Hollund, Department of Occupational Medicine and Norwegian Center for Maritime Medicine, Haukeland University Hospital
Transport of goods by freight containers is used all over the world. More than 600 million container units are filled, shipped and stripped annually. The freight containers are frequently treated with chemicals that kill pests before shipping. Pest control is implemented to protect the cargo from being damaged by pests during the rather long transport time, and thereby to prevent the spread of unwanted organisms. The chemicals used are toxic not only to pests, but also to humans. The fumigants are usually applied in a gas form to the containers, a process termed fumigation. The major fumigants used today are methyl bromide (MeBr) and phosphine (PH3). When these containers arrive at the destination there may be residues of the fumigation chemicals that may represent a risk to the workers that open and unload the containers. Fumigated containers are seldom labelled with warnings that show that they are fumigated even if international regulations say so. Several incidents have been reported where workers have been exposed to such fumigant residues and experienced adverse health effects, some of them severe. Health personnel working at hospitals and clinics have reported about patients they have examined after what seem to be intoxications by fumigants. Still there is limited documentation that shows the extent and the severity of the problem, probably because several of the incidents are not publically reported.