From: Judy Seigel (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: 02/21/03-01:01:11 AM Z
On Thu, 20 Feb 2003, Liam Lawless wrote:
> From: Sandy King [mailto:sanking@CLEMSON.EDU]
> Sent: 20 February 2003 17:23
> .... how many
> times have people posted to this list regarding safety issues relating to
> the use of dichromates? But dichromate and silver nitrate, to deal only with
> the two chemicals you mention above, are not hazardous in common use.
> Obviously you don't want to ingest them but in common use and storage they
> are not going to explode in your face and kill you
As noted, I think the attempt to make a hierarchy of danger is futile.
There's also the fact, as I noted in 1999,that folks may actually be more
careful with the officially XTREME chemicals than they are with "everyday"
stuff like silver nitrate and dichromate.
In fact, in the very issue so condemned for gold chloride, I wrote a
feature titled "The Healthy Photographer," in which I said,
If you do not have the sense to handle ALL photo chemicals with utmost
care at every turn, with DRY HANDS (which require good gloves), waterproof
apron, and COVERED TRAYS, my first inclination is to say nothing: You are
so dumb you deserve your fate. On second thought, you might produce mutant
offspring who, through no fault of their own, would lead lives of utter
So be CAREFUL in any room with chemicals. You smoke in the darkroom?
Minute particles of chemicals in the air attach to the smoke and are
sucked RIGHT INTO YOUR LUNGS. You drink in the darki? Good luck...
etc. etc. for four more paragraphs of explicit warnings...
And I add here that I have read (tho of course have no "proof") that
photographers have a one-third higher death rate from cancer than the
population at large. Some famous names come to mind -- from Mortensen to
Winogrand, and many inbetween.
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