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9.11 investigation

Half 9-11 Rescue Workers' Health Suffering;Pollution'Could Cause More Deaths THAN ATTACK

Nearly half of the more than 1,000 screened rescue workers who responded to the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks suffer from new or exacerbated respiratory, mental, and other health problems, according to a government report released Thursday. --- PLUS: Up to 400,000 New Yorkers breathed in the most toxic polluting cloud ever recorded...no proper effort has been made to find out how their health has been affected according to an official report. --- The US government study provides the latest evidence of a systematic cover-up... --- Bush suppressed evidence of increasing danger... --- between 250,000 and 400,000 people in lower Manhattan were exposed to the pollution on 11 September 2001. No systematic effort to adequately monitor the well-being of those affected, give them physical examinations or provide treatment. --- cloud of pulverised debris from the skyscrapers was uniquely dangerous. Government's own figures show it contained the highest levels of deadly dioxins ever recorded - about 1,500 times normal levels. Unprecedented levels of acids, sulphur, fine particles, heavy metals and other dangerous materials were also measured. Asbestos was found at 27 times acceptable levels, and scientists found about 400 organic alkanes, phthalates and polyaromatic hydrocarbons - many suspected of causing cancer and other long-term diseases. Ground Zero smouldering became a "chemical factory", creating new dangerous substances.
AND BUSH FIDDLES ON.


1.

Half Of 911 WTC Rescue Workers' Health Suffering
9-12-4

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Nearly half of the more than 1,000 screened rescue workers who responded to the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks suffer from new or exacerbated respiratory, mental, and other health problems, according to a government report released Thursday.

The report, from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), is the second released in two days to find that firefighters, police officers, and volunteers show persistent effects from environmental toxins and psychological stress.

On Wednesday, a similar study from the Government Accountability Office, the investigative arm of Congress, noted that many rescue workers suffer wheezing, shortness of breath, sinusitis, asthma, and a syndrome called "WTC cough."

The latest health study, conducted at Mount Sinai School of Medicine, showed that nearly half of the 1,138 people screened had problems that either began or worsened after being exposed to the dust, airborne toxins, and pollutants unleashed by the collapsed buildings.

"These preliminary findings of the WTC Screening Program demonstrate that large numbers of workers and volunteers suffered persistent, substantial effects on their respiratory and psychological health as a result of their efforts," said Dr. Stephen Levin, co-director of the World Trade Center Worker and Volunteer Medical Screening Program.

Of those screened, 51 percent suffered mental health problems and their risk of post-traumatic stress disorder was four times the rate of the disorder in the general male population, the report said.

The analysis is part of a broader study of about 12,000 people being evaluated at Mount Sinai.

The CDC also released results of the first phase of an investigation, conducted with the Mailman School of Public Health at Columbia University, into the evacuation process at the World Trade Center.

The report looked at the factors influencing decisions people made as to whether to leave the twin towers once the attacks had begun. Some were delayed due to concern about getting permission from their bosses while others stayed to shut down computers and collect personal items.

Structural damage to the building, such as debris on stairs or partially collapsed interior walls, blocked exits, the report said, and heavy congestion on certain stairways caused some to back up to seek an alternative route down. In addition, there was a lack of back-up public address systems or other communications systems.

A separate report published on Wednesday in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives found that pregnant women who were close to the World Trade Center at the time of the attack were more likely to give birth to lower-weight babies.

The CDC said that only 21 percent of the workers and volunteers participating in the screening program had appropriate respiratory protection between Sept. 11 and Sept. 14, 2001, the days when the impact of dust, diesel exhaust, pulverized cement, glass fibers, and asbestos was considered the greatest.

The CDC plans to continue medical screening for five years.


 http://www.enn.com/news/2004-09-10/s_27108.asp

2.

911 Pollution 'Could Cause More Deaths Than Attack'
By Geoffrey Lean
Environment Editor The Independent - UK
9-12-2004

Up to 400,000 New Yorkers breathed in the most toxic polluting cloud ever recorded after the twin towers were brought down three years ago, but no proper effort has been made to find out how their health has been affected, according to an official report.

The US government study provides the latest evidence of a systematic cover-up of the health toll from pollution after the 9/11 disaster, which doctors fear will cause more deaths than the attacks themselves.

The Bush administration suppressed evidence of increasing danger and officially announced that the air around the felled buildings was "safe to breathe". Another report reveals that it has since failed at least a dozen times to correct its assurances, even when it became clear that people were becoming sick.

The official report - sent to Congress last week by the US Government Accountability Office - says that between 250,000 and 400,000 people in lower Manhattan were exposed to the pollution on 11 September 2001. But it shows that the government has yet to make a comprehensive effort to study the effects on their health.

And it reveals that there is no systematic effort to adequately monitor the well-being of those affected, give them physical examinations or provide treatment.

Scientific studies have shown that the cloud of pulverised debris from the skyscrapers was uniquely dangerous. The US government's own figures show that it contained the highest levels of deadly dioxins ever recorded - about 1,500 times normal levels. Unprecedented levels of acids, sulphur, fine particles, heavy metals and other dangerous materials were also measured.

Asbestos was found at 27 times acceptable levels, and scientists found about 400 organic alkanes, phthalates and polyaromatic hydrocarbons - many suspected of causing cancer and other long-term diseases.

The site at Ground Zero went on smouldering, becoming what scientists describe as a "chemical factory", creating new dangerous substances.

2004 Independent Digital (UK) Ltd. All rights reserved  http://news.independent.co.uk/world/environment/story.jsp?story=560842

Bush blocks funds for WTC rescue workers health or NYC monitoring 21.Sep.2004 03:09

more

Flashback: Bush Blocked Bill For WTC Rescue Workers and Firemen: People Becoming Ill and Dying as a Result of the Deliberate Demolition of Building 7

At his Waco, Texas pep rally on the economy, President Bush announced that he intended to enforce "spending restraint" by blocking a US$5.1 billion emergency spending Bill passed by Congress. The Bill included US$90 million for long-term health monitoring of World Trade Centre (WTC) rescue workers and volunteers who were exposed to a catastrophe with potential long-term health and environmental consequences.

Ful London Guardian story at  http://www.cpa.org.au/garchve5/1108bush.html

The Guardian September 11, 2002

Bush blocks funds for WTC rescue workers


by Judith Le Blanc

At his Waco, Texas pep rally on the economy, President Bush announced that
he intended to enforce "spending restraint" by blocking a US$5.1 billion
emergency spending Bill passed by Congress. The Bill included US$90 million
for long-term health monitoring of World Trade Centre (WTC) rescue workers
and volunteers who were exposed to a catastrophe with potential long-term
health and environmental consequences.

The Bush administration also slapped down firefighters and veterans,
rejecting US$250 million for fire-fighting equipment and training and
US$275 million to reduce the backlog of patients at veterans' medical
centres.

Reaction was swift and strong. Congressman Jerrold Nadler (Democrat-NY)
said, "Now the President is backtracking on the commitment to America's
heroes and he ought to be ashamed."

International Association of Fire Fighters General President Harold
Schaitberger wrote to Bush after the announcement, "Quite frankly, I would
be dishonest if I did not convey our anger, concern and growing doubt about
your commitment to us. I will not, in good conscience, allow our membership
to be used as foils. No-one, not even the President, has the right to
pontificate about his or her commitment and respect for firefighters while
ignoring our legitimate needs."

Richard Santos, national commander of the American Legion, said, "More than
300,000 veterans new to the VA system are on waiting lists, some more than
one year long, for the initial medical exams they need in order to qualify
for prescription drug benefits."

Bush pledged his support to the Legion's national convention as a candidate
in 2000. "Now, we feel we've been let down", said Santos. "A verbal promise
in front of 6,000 people is something you have to keep."

Don Carson, director of Hazmat Program of the International Union of
Operating Engineers, who worked at Ground Zero from September 15 until it
was cleared, told the People's Weekly World, "The union handed out over
12,000 respirators. We did independent air testing which was shared with
the EPA. You may not know for years the effects of working on the pile.

"It was a horrific job", he said. "Every day that goes by people begin to
forget what happened. We're tired of being called heroes. We want respect
for the job that we do. If they are serious about homeland security then
they have to do the training and the health monitoring."

Many health and environmental protection specialists have characterised
Ground Zero as a catastrophe without precedent. The WTC structure,
furnishings, office equipment and supplies were reduced to a burning 16-
acre heap that smouldered for weeks at very high temperatures.

Pulverised concrete, glass, steel, zinc and asbestos were hurled into the
air not only in the immediate area but also into Brooklyn. Hazardous
materials from the wreckage were transported through New York Harbour to
the Staten Island landfill, exposing untold numbers of people to asbestos
and other toxins.

Pawel Kedzior of Local 78 Asbestos, Lead and Hazardous Waste Laborers,
whose members worked day and night at Ground Zero, commented, "It's
disgusting that the President of this country wants to cut off money for
health checkups."

Kedzior continued, "We got independent results at Ground Zero from tests
run to monitor the air quality. For obvious reasons businesses in NY were
scared to do the test because they were worried about jobs in the future so
we had to get testing done from outside." He said, "The pile was one huge
pile of toxins."

With the emergency funding, an initial screening program of 8500 WTC rescue
workers would have been expanded to include all 18,000 who worked or
volunteered at Ground Zero.

Jonathan Bennett, NY Committee for Occupational Safety and Heath public
affairs director, said if the funds are not restored then tens of thousands
who need to be monitored will not be eligible for treatment programs.

"If they come down with illnesses 20 years from now ... and are not watched
as a statistical group, their medical treatment will be affected ...
Workers simply won't get medical care they need if they come down with
diseases years later."

Mario Cilento, New York State AFL-CIO [peak union body] communications
director, told the World the labour federation would be meeting with
members of Congress after Labour Day to demand action. The WTC rescue
workers are owed peace of mind by the government, he said.

* * *

A Sad Reminder 18.Jul.2014 10:37

Jane Fairfax

This whole thing is just a sad reminder that our firefighters are heroes. We assume they are protected when they go out, that they are given what they need to stay safe. But obviously some of it is inadequate. Proper firefighting equipment is crucial. Without it, lives can and will be put in danger. It's not just about burns or things falling. It's about the lasting effects. If the equipment isn't working right, then small particles can get into the bodies of these brave men and women, and they can plant the seeds for problems like what we see here. This is an area where you can't be too careful.

 http://www.fireprotectionservices.com.au/portable_fire_equipment