Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Volcanologist Safety

Since 1975, twenty-nine volcanologists have died due to occupational injury and exposures, making this arguably the most dangerous current field of scientific research. Injuries and deaths are due to falls, explosive blasts, flying debris, heat, and toxic gases. Safety equipment for volcanologists should include:

1. Hand-held, two-way radios
2. Protective helmets (hard hats) with chin straps
3. Full-face gas masks (respirators) with the correct type of absorbers and filters for the expected gases (with a supply of spares)
4. Brightly colored clothing suitable for harsh weather conditions and for protection from ash fall and heat.
5. Heavy-duty boots with good ankle support
6. Gloves provide protection from cuts, abrasions, and burns
7. A basic first-aid kit
8. Adequate water and food supplies
9. Topographic maps, compass, altimeter, knife, whistle, signal mirror
10. Identification tags or equivalent, with blood type, name and address of person to contact
11. Goggles or other suitable eye wear

For more information, please see http://www.iavcei.org/ .

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