Writer's Guide to Government Information

Resources to inject real life detail into your fiction

Archive for the tag “poisons”

New Jersey Right to Know Hazardous Substance Fact Sheets

New Jersey Right to Know Hazardous Substance Fact Sheets – http://web.doh.state.nj.us/rtkhsfs/indexfs.aspx

Representative questions that can be answered with this resource:

  • What industrial substances can cause paralysis?
  • What are the effects of exposure to Ammonium Flouride?
  • How can I identify Nitrogen Mustard?

Description:

From the website:

The Fact Sheets are prepared for substances on the New Jersey Right to Know Hazardous Substance List. More than 1,600 Fact Sheets have been completed and more than 900 have been translated into Spanish. The Fact Sheets are prepared on pure substances and contain information on health hazards, exposure limits, personal protective equipment, proper handling, first aid, and emergency procedures for fires and spills.

The fact sheets are divided into the following sections:

  • Hazard summary
  • Identification
  • Reason for citation
  • How to determine if you are being exposed
  • Workplace exposure limits
  • Ways of reducing exposure
  • Heath Hazard Information
  • Medical
  • Workplace controls and practices
  • Personal protective equipment
  • Questons and answers
  • Definitions
  • Emergency Information

Search Tip:

This is another site that is amendable to some search engine mining to zero in on effects writers want for their characters. To look for substances based on affected organs or effects, use this in Google and other major search engines:

[organ or effect] inurl:health/eoh/rtkweb/documents/fs/

For example, a search using (“bladder” inurl:health/eoh/rtkweb/documents/fs/) brought up 12 results at the time of this writing, showing that Turpentine can harm your bladder and arsenic has potential to give you bladder cancer.

A search using (paralysis inurl:health/eoh/rtkweb/documents/fs/) brought up just five results and indicates that very high levels of barium or barium nitrate can induce paralysis.

Whether you know what to make your character ingest or if you’re going symptom shopping, you ought to find something amidst these 1600 data sheets.

This site might also be useful in stories involving first responders or hazardous materials workers.

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CDC Poisoning Fact Sheet

CDC Poisoning Fact Sheet –https://www.cdc.gov/HomeandRecreationalSafety/Poisoning/index.html

Representative questions that can be answered with this resource:

  • Which groups are at the greatest risk for poisoning?
  • What are some ways that people can prevent unintentional poisoning?
  • What painkillers are common sources of overdose poisonings?

Description:

Did you know that if you’re 35-54, you’re more likely to die of unintentional poisoning than of a traffic accident? This and other interesting facts are on offer from this fact sheet from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. This page also provides an overview of common poisons and links to further reading.

MedlinePlus Poisoning

MedlinePlus Poisoning – http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/poisoning.html

Representative questions that can be answered with this resource:

  • Where can I find a medical toxicologist?
  • What does mercury do to the brain and nervous system?
  • What are some natural ways you can be exposed to arsenic?
  • What information should you have in hand before calling the poison center?
  • What are the most common poisons resulting in death or hospitalization in the United States?

Description:

This MedlinePlus topic page offers information on types of poisonings and poison first aid. Some of the poisons covered here include

  • Ammonia
  • Arsenic
  • Black nightshade
  • Bug spray
  • Caladium plant
  • Copper
  • Detergent
  • Dieffenbachia
  • Lead
  • Mercury

 

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