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Title:How PFAS has affected the South Australian Metropolitan Fire Service
Author(s):Mitchell, Krystle
Subject(s):per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances
Abstract:Presented by: Krystle Mitchell – Senior Scientific and Environment Officer at South Australian Metropolitan Fire Service, Co-authors: Station Officer Shaun Goad Abstract: The SA Metropolitan Fire Service (MFS) started investigating PFAS within the fire service in 2015. Due to funding from the SA Government, we were in a position where we could develop plans and engage with all relevant agencies. We then acted on the investigation to mitigate risk from foam products containing fluorine and their impact on appliances, stations, fire vessels, community, and human health (both mental and physical). Our data revealed MFS specific soil, appliance, food and blood contamination. Remediation has occurred in all four media with encouraging results. MFS was in a fortunate position to offer voluntary PFAS blood tests to all of its current and retired staff. This enabled a database of over 800 results to be developed, with which we established, in conjunction with medical practitioners, academics and SA Health, an occupational exposure. It also allowed us to develop, in conjunction with those previously mentioned, a reduction in body burden of PFAS in serum for those above the occupational exposure. As an early adopter with a commitment to a precautionary approach, it hasn’t been easy and many lessons have been learnt. We would like to share this journey and the lessons we have learnt with you all. Biography: Krystle Mitchell has been the Senior Scientific and Environment Officer at the South Australian Metropolitan Fire Service for the past fifteen years. She provides specialist scientific advice and guidance to operational firefighters and other government agencies for Hazmat/CBRN response, training and equipment, and education to the MFS and external stakeholders.
Issue Date:2021-04-28
Series/Report:2021 Emerging Contaminants in the Environment Conference (ECEC21)
Genre:Presentation / Lecture / Speech
Conference Paper / Presentation
Date Available in IDEALS:2021-04-23

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