Testing Results and Health of Exposed Workers

Testing Results and Health of Exposed Workers title=
Testing Results and Health of Exposed Workers
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(Mike Eliason photo)

Source: Santa Barbara County


The Public Health Department has reviewed results from testing of mudslide samples and made recommendations to protect the health of exposed workers.

This mudslide event caused unknown amounts of potentially hazardous chemicals and untreated sewage to be swept into the mudslide debris that flowed through impacted areas. To guide decisions on the appropriate use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and appropriate decontamination procedures for first responders working in the area, the Incident Management Team conducted testing of mudslide samples taken from 10 different locations in Montecito.

Results were released to the Incident Management Team Safety Officer on January 18, 2018. In an effort to protect all workers, results are being shared with County staff and partner agencies. Of the five substances tested for (bacteria, TPH, asbestos, PCBs, and CAM 17), two of them were detected in concentrations that may pose a potential health risk in exposed workers involved in recovery and clean-up. (Full test results are available at http://bit.ly/2BiCh4O)

Exposed workers were notified that they should be alert to potential health conditions including rashes, wound infections and gastrointestinal illness. Vaccinations for tetanus is required and vaccination for Hepatitis A is optional for exposed workers. In addition, guidance has been given about safety and protection measures to be taken by exposed workers. The safety precautions include wearing protective clothing, washing hands thoroughly, eating in designated areas and cleaning work clothing on a daily basis.

The Public Health Department will continue to monitor activities related to recovery to support the health of our community.


To protect residents from exposure to raw sewage and other chemicals that may be present in the mud, the Public Health Department offers the following guidance:

1. Wear long-sleeved shirts, pants, rubber boots and nitrile gloves. If there is potential for exposure to wet mud and boots do not offer enough protection, a water-repellent coverall should be worn. If there is potential for eye exposure, then goggles should be worn.

2. Remove excess mud from footgear before entering a vehicle or a building.

3. Wash hands thoroughly with soap and water after contact with mud.

4. Avoid touching face, mouth, eyes, nose, genitalia, or open sores and cuts while working.

5. Wash hands before you eat, drink, or smoke and before and after using the bathroom.

6. Eat in designated areas away from mud-handling activities.

7. Do not smoke or chew tobacco or gum while working with mud.

8. Keep wounds covered with clean, dry bandages.

9. Thoroughly but gently flush eyes with water if mud comes in contact with eyes.

10. Change into clean work clothing on a daily basis. Keep footgear for use at worksite only.

11. Do not wear work clothes home or outside the work environment.

12. Use gloves to prevent skin abrasions.

13. Hand-washing stations with clean water and mild soap should be readily available. In the case of workers in the field, portable sanitation equipment, including clean water and soap, should be provided.

14. Where the mud has dried out and is now creating dust, workers who may be exposed to dust should be given, at a minimum, N95 particulate filtering face piece respirators.

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mrtrump Jan 23, 2018 11:39 AM
Testing Results and Health of Exposed Workers

What about the hundreds of thousands of people who breathed in the large amounts of dust created by the thousands of tons of dried mud spilled on the roads and Highway 101?

Potif Jan 23, 2018 05:26 PM
Testing Results and Health of Exposed Workers

And, I wonder what MRTRUMP suggests we do about all of us who may have been exposed to the "large amounts" of dust from the subsequent mud spills along 101 during cleanup. Or, the mud they placed in eroded areas along the edge of 101 near Patterson and Fairview... that will dry up and create dust. I guess we need to evacuate Goleta and Isla Vistaas well. I don't live real far from those areas. And, the people driving along that area of 101 will also contribute to additional dust in the air, from the roadside, just by the wind from driving at high speeds creates. Guess that means closing down 101... again!?

mrtrump Jan 23, 2018 11:49 AM
Testing Results and Health of Exposed Workers

Why are they allowing people to move back into Montecito? Why are they allowing CHILDREN to move back into Montecito? There is at least 1 million tons of toxic mud left in the slide area.

mrtrump Jan 23, 2018 03:15 PM
Testing Results and Health of Exposed Workers

To the comment @1:49 P.M- Did you not read the article? The dust from dried mud is so toxic they recommend wearing a filtration respirator, not just a mask. The dust contains heavy metals, asbestos, human fecal matter, PCB's and God knows what else. What's wrong with you?

Potif Jan 23, 2018 03:22 PM
Testing Results and Health of Exposed Workers

MRTRUMP.... Are you going/willing to take these people into your home? Or, would you be willing to pay for their hotel costs until everything is 'perfect', or at least back to the way it was? Or, should they return to their home(s).... IF they still have one?

mrtrump Jan 23, 2018 04:43 PM
Testing Results and Health of Exposed Workers

To Potif- There are about 10,000 displaced people. Motel 6 charges $70 per room per night. That's $700,000 per day for 10,000 people. Oprah, who wants to run for President, can show us she cares about her fellow Montecito residents by contributing 25% of her fortune ($500 Million) to pay that Motel 6 bill. That's almost 2 years worth of free Motel 6 shelter for the displaced Montecito residents. California has plenty of Motel 6's.

Potif Jan 23, 2018 04:56 PM
Testing Results and Health of Exposed Workers

Everyone from Goleta ( and beyond) to Carpinteria (and beyond) are going to be breathing dust from the mudslide area. Not much different than when we all breathed smoke for weeks, just will generally not be as noticeable. Somehow, most, if not all, will probably survive... as our ancestors did in the past, before we had a common knowledge of what was lurking in flood waters and mud... and the resulting dust in later times as the land dried out. And, our ancestors didn't usually have masks for filtration. Maybe a kerchief, or a piece of cloth.

Potif Jan 23, 2018 05:17 PM
Testing Results and Health of Exposed Workers

MRTRUMP... First, you are assuming Oprah's worth to be available cash. Second, I doubt that there are enough Motel 6's close enough to this area for a HUGE majority of those people to be able to be near their jobs, if the place they work is still open. Don't forget they need to eat as well, which adds a lot to helping them. Only a few rooms at Motel 6 have cooking facilities, and/or refrigerators... Along with other needs. I notice you didn't say anything about helping yourself. Why should Oprah be the only person helping out? While she was fortunate not to lose her home, I suspect she will be spending a lot on cleanup, and repairs herself. That will help provide work for some (hopefully local) folks. But some of them may have to return to their homes in the Montecito area. I suspect that those close to Montecito will also be exposed to the dust, such as the Milpas area, and downtown Santa Barbara. Should they be evacuated as well, for their safety?

Mas Gaviota Jan 23, 2018 05:45 PM
Testing Results and Health of Exposed Workers

Perhaps the real Mr. Trump, the one that lives at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave, could use part of his huuuuuuuge fortune to pay th emotel bill for the Montecito residents.

yin yang Jan 23, 2018 07:56 PM
Testing Results and Health of Exposed Workers

I read quite a bit of the report. Where does it say the mud is toxic? Yes, there are increased levels of coliform bacteria in some locations, and lots of petroleum crud all over. The latter is probably as toxic as living next to a freeway. The former? It's in certain areas. It's why people aren't supposed to play, swim or SURF in the ocean. But they do, by choice.
These reports are to INFORM people so they can be more careful. Government works to ameliorate the risks.
You're interesting. A refugee from Noozhawk comments? Please supply sources and information/data for at least some of your assertions. Thanks! Have a nice evening.

yin yang Jan 23, 2018 08:02 PM
Testing Results and Health of Exposed Workers

"Oprah, who wants to run for president..." You know what? Her fans and the media made that up. She never said it! It was a reaction to a very fine, uplifting speech she made in response to receiving an award. If you haven't seen it, you can watch or read it:
video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fN5HV79_8B8
transcript: https://www.cnn.com/2018/01/08/entertainment/oprah-globes-speech-transcript/index.html

yin yang Jan 23, 2018 08:08 PM
Testing Results and Health of Exposed Workers

I've contemplated this. We have no idea if or how much rich celebrities have or will donate. I think it will be a lot. I know it will be more than I can afford.

yin yang Jan 23, 2018 08:05 PM
Testing Results and Health of Exposed Workers

WHAT REPORT DID YOU READ?!?! ======================================================================
NO, that is ZERO, asbestos or PCB's were found or reported!
please supply the reports you read, the ones that back up your assertions. Thanks. I'm done with you. For now. :-)

mrtrump Jan 23, 2018 09:11 PM
Testing Results and Health of Exposed Workers

To yin yang- You're interesting. You're OK having your property covered with a toxic slurry of human waste, heavy metals, gasoline and other chemicals - BUT THANK GOD THERE'S NO PCB'S! You must be a real estate agent.

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