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As a result of the expansion of environmental site assessment (ESA) practice, there has developed a potential for field investigators to put themselves at risk from the materials being sampled or the site being investigated. The authors propose the development of a supporting standard to define the measures necessary to recognize, evaluate and control hazards which environmental professionals may encounter during investigative activities. Existing standards addressing environmental investigations and remediation work peripherally cite the importance of safe work practices while mandating procedures which may result in unnecessary or unknowing exposures. Federal and State regulations define what work is to be completed, and what goals are to be met but do not provide specific information on hazards to the workers involved. The authors illustrate this need through citation of various ASTM Standards, presentation of case studies and a recommended outline for development of a standard site safety and health plan.
action level, environmental site assessment, health and safety audit, MSDS (Materials Safety Data Sheet), personal protective equipment (PPE), site safety and health plan
Associated Safety Professional, Lebanon Valley Environmental Health and Safety, West Lebanon, NY
Certified Industrial Hygienist, Ames Plating Inc., Chicopee, MA