Re: B5

From:Bryan Hewlett


 The environmental laws here are fairly strict.
Particularly since the Northwestern Ontario mercury contamination debacle!
You may recall the devastating effect of mercury contamination on the native
population there, following the industrial contamination of the rivers and
A home grown Minimata!
That was, quite rightly, the main driving force for elimination.
I was living in Thunder Bay at the time and saw, first hand, what the
effects were.
I'm sure that the WLSSD reacted to that.
We too, have eliminated mercury from thermometers, pressure cuffs etc.
Many labs have ceased using B-5 or other mercuric chloride containing

Currently, yes!
We do still use B-5, others still use Zenker. However, the use is strictly
controlled and authorized disposal is very costly.
We are about to change from B-5 to ?
Current testing is under way.


Bryan R. Hewlett
Technical Specialist
Anatomical Pathology
Hamilton Regional Laboratory Medicine Program
Ontario, Canada

----- Original Message -----
From: "Jasper, Thomas" 
To: "'Bryan Hewlett'" 
Sent: Thursday, May 09, 2002 4:01 PM
Subject: RE: B5

> Bryan,
> You are still allowed mercury in your lab? That is really surprising since
> there is absolute zero tolerance for mercury in this part of the Great
> Lakes. I'm mean blood pressure cuffs, thermometers, everything. I was
> the impression that Canadian environmental law was pretty strict. Our docs
> certainly preferred B-5 but the Western Lake Superior Sanitary District
> the hammer down!  We use a very good substitute(B-plus)and I'm glad we do
> for the sake of the environment.

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