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Chemical Risk Assessment & Prevention

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Areas of Expertise

Michael Fox, PhD.



Chemical Risk Assessment and Prevention

When Dr. Fox first left the corporate world in the early 1980's, one of his first undertakings was to develop a comprehensive Chemical Risk Assessment & Prevention Program known as CHEMRAP. The initial objective of CHEMRAP was to manage and control the use of chemicals in the workplace to prevent chemical misuse and/or accidents. One goal in particular was to keep chemicals from entering the primary circuits of nuclear reactors where they would cause instantaneous corrosion that in turn caused many millions of dollars in economic damages. Therefore, managing and controlling chemicals was more than just a good idea.

During this same 1980's time frame, OSHA enacted and expanded the Hazard Communication Standard (HCS) designed to prevent chemical-related employee injuries. Therefore, it was natural that CHEMRAP was expanded to include compliance with the OSHA Hazard Communication Standard.

The OSHA Hazard Communication Standard requires, among other things, the identification of all chemicals in the workplace, the availability of a Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) for each chemical, and the training of employees. As a result, Dr. Fox and personally inventoried thousands of chemicals, evaluated thousands of MSDSs and developed chemical training programs for managers and employees. Dr. Fox also developed an independent (supplemental) labeling system to augment chemical safety. In other words, chemicals had their manufacturer's label and also had a supplemental CHEMRAP label that had a more consistent warning system and was easier to understand.

CHEMRAP was first developed for nuclear power plants owned and operated by the Federal Government. In the years that followed, CHEMRAP was implemented at numerous other nuclear power plants.