Getting Blood In Machine Coolant - Page 2
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  1. #21
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    Related OT: Once upon a time, while waiting in the "Returns" line at WalMart, I whittled on a cuticle (or something) and caused a little blood to flow. There was actually a .25 diameter spot of blood on the receipt. When I got to the clerk, I asked if I could get a Band-Aid or tissue/paper towel. Holy Cow! What a fuss. They couldn't wait to give a refund and send me on my way. The clerk never touched the receipt. Much trigger spraying and counter wiping as I walked away. I'm probably lucky I wasn't arrested and charged with a felony. Reckless Manicuring (certain to be a felony in California).

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    Quote Originally Posted by gbent View Post
    For plants with multi thousand gallon central coolant systems, do you have any idea the amount of blood required to contaminate the system to the point of removal and cleansing?
    Yes, very little.
    Now do you have recent experience in plants with sumps this size and the paranoia over lawsuits from bloodborne pathogens?
    It's crazy, I saw a guy hurt in a transfer bar and people were afraid to help. I was reamed for jumping in without safety gear. WTF?
    And I'm not an employee at this plant, just a body that gives a shit about others I know. My only thought was stop the thing, back off the motor and get his hand out so I'm barking orders at people and got plenty of blood on my nice white shirt.
    My bad, for this I'm in big, big trouble. You would have thought I was Satan himself,
    The emergency crews treated me like I was now hazardous waste to be sent to the furnaces. It was nuts, crazy, ...words can't describe it.
    The news outlets have reduced many workers to looney fear levels so dumping 10 thousand gallons is SOP.
    Bob

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  4. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by gbent View Post
    For plants with multi thousand gallon central coolant systems, do you have any idea the amount of blood required to contaminate the system to the point of removal and cleansing?

    And if the guy does have a blood-borne pathogen (aids or others) and you don't change it and infect 200 people, what's the cost of that?

    In our case, it matters not what the size of the tank is. It is drained, the system is sterilized and then refilled. The machine is also cleaned and sterilized by the trained staff.

  5. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tonytn36 View Post
    And if the guy does have a blood-borne pathogen (aids or others) and you don't change it and infect 200 people, what's the cost of that?

    In our case, it matters not what the size of the tank is. It is drained, the system is sterilized and then refilled. The machine is also cleaned and sterilized by the trained staff.
    In a large plant environment, I wonder how the cost of cleaning up bio hazards compares (ranks) to other costs on the manufacturing shop floor. Must be a very significant factor.

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    I teach the annual required blood borne pathogens class at our plant. (Fortune 100 company one of hundreds of plants) I also serve o their emergency response team as well as the local volunteer fire dept. and carry current National Registry certifications as an EMT and CPR Instructor. I wouldn't get in a huge twist over it, the only one of the contractible diseases that will last more than a couple minutes outside the human body is Hepatitis-C. This pathogen is easily rendered harmless with the bactericides available to add to your coolant. I very much doubt that it would survive in a coolant tank at all, I think I'd be much more worried about the chance of infection from other bacteria in that tank that could be contracted by the original victim. If the there was enough blood to turn the coolant a different color and make it unnerving to others than by all means, change it but even under laboratory conditions Hep-C (the most robust of the diseases) can only live outside the body for a few days. If that employee who was injured does have a dangerous condition you should be much more worried about the mess he makes daily in bathroom.

    PS If any of you need a really good PowerPoint presentation on pathogens PM me and I'll send it to you.

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  8. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by CarbideBob View Post
    Yes, very little.

    Bob
    Sorry Bob, but I find it very difficult to believe that coolant, known to be contaminated with a few drops of blood (unless known to be containing a disease infectious to humans) would be classified as a "biohazard" in terms of waste disposal due to that blood. If this was the case the world would stop turning once a month!!!

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    I was expecting to hear a gruesome story of how much blood was in the coolant. I worked at a place where a guy was killed. The press was still a mess even after the 'professionals' cleaned it up.

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    I run blood for coolant. Goat blood is best.

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    I worked for a place that wanted every last drop of blood, whether it went into the coolant or not was not important.

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  13. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pete F View Post
    Sorry Bob, but I find it very difficult to believe that coolant, known to be contaminated with a few drops of blood (unless known to be containing a disease infectious to humans) would be classified as a "biohazard" in terms of waste disposal due to that blood. If this was the case the world would stop turning once a month!!!
    The problem is that reality and probability have zero to do with this. The big companies are paranoid and run from any hint of risk. They would rather have everyone stand around and do nothing all day than risk a slight laceration and the hazmat cleanup team, hence the use of all of the fancy gloves that are now mandatory.

    The problem is that we are living in a world with some very nasty communicable diseases that generally do not have a total cure and require lots of chronic care treatment. This is a financial blank check situation and anyone with deep pockets needs to run from this just to cover their rears.

    Unfortunately Bob's story is all to common. In one sense this is a borderline situation in which the rescuer can easily become a victim. The grim reality is that the bean counters are more comfortable with one death than one seriously injured and a rescuer infected with a chronic possible fatal disease.

    I prefer not to live in a world paranoid as what it is and am very thankful that we have people, like Bob, that are willing to break the rules in order to save a life, albeit with some risk.

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  15. #31
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    Oh I agree, I think if I were running an organisation and knew about it, it would be cheaper and easier to mitigate the risk by changing out the coolant rather than the legal exposure of not doing it. So somebody picks up some disease months or years later, they find out that the plant had coolant contaminated by blood, and it wasn't changed. I think the manufacturer would have a hard time the disease WASN'T acquired from that coolant. However I'm not trying to play bush lawyer here.

    My point was that I can't imagine it would be classified "Hazmat" by any definition I know of as far as disposal of the coolant, above and beyond what it would already be classed as. If the company chose to treat it as such due legal exposure that's a different matter entirely.

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    We have become a society of lunatics. As rb07565 said, blood borne pathogens won't survive very long in coolant.

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    It probably has more to do with what is required to satisfy the insurance and avoidance of a law suit than any real health risk from the situation.
    I went into work one day and a Cinci. vertical mill was roped off with yellow ribbon? I asked and a worker and find out another machinist on the previous shift had an epileptic fit and bled on the machine. They drained the coolant, disinfected everything including the surrounding floor area, totally ridiculous in MHO but what do I know. It was a couple of days before they put that machine back to work? As filthy dirty as parts of that shop were and all that for a little blood, makes me wonder where it all is going?
    Dan

  19. #34
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    I wonder what the Chinese do in these situations. Have parts made in China been bathed in blood laced coolant?


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