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911report_by_MARF - The 9-11 World Trade Center Collapse...

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a call to action by MARF V10.doc The 9-11 World Trade Center Collapse Asbestos Risk Assessment A Call For Action Figure 1: The Towers Under Attack – Photo: Aris Economopoulos The Star-Ledger A Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation Report Klaus Brauch Communications Director November 1, 2004
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a call to action by MARF V10.doc - 2 - Introduction The collapse of the World Trade Towers (WTC), in the aftermath of the 9-11 terrorist attacks, is one of the most catastrophic political, economic, and social disasters to ever occur in America. Ramifications from the collapse are both far reaching, and long lasting, and are expected to have an impact on the lives of the citizens of the United States, and indeed of the world, for the foreseeable future. Sadly, the death of 2654 1 innocent individuals in Manhattan was celebrated as a great victory by supporters of Al Qaeda around the world. There is little doubt that further innocent deaths related to 9-11 would add to the prestige and influence of Al Qaeda, increasing their ability to recruit new martyrs and to continue and even expand their attacks on the West. It is imperative that we prevent further deaths related to 9-11 from happening. But are future deaths and injuries likely as a result of the terrorist attack of 9- 11? Can we establish that contamination from the dust of the collapse of the towers might be the cause of future health problems among residents and rescue workers? We know that the gray cloud which covered lower Manhattan on 9-11, and the immediate aftermath, contained a variety of substances that are usually injurious to human health. These included traces of glass shards, asbestos, fiberglass, pulverized concrete, lead, mercury, cadmium, dioxins, PCB’s, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons as well as benzene. 2 Significant media attention has already been directed at the short term health impact of exposure to this concoction. It now appears that many first responders, cleanup crews and local residents have fallen ill with a variety of 1 “The World Trade Center” Sad News Dot Net Weekly 2 “Fallout”, Jennifer Senior, New Yorker Magazine, September 20,2004, P 4 Figure 2: The 9-11 dust cloud advances – Photo Bill Biggart © 2001
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a call to action by MARF V10.doc - 3 - respiratory ailments, including a “World Trade Center Cough” caused by bronchial responsiveness 3 as well as “ear, nose, and throat problems.” 4 5 These have affected fully 88 percent of those who participated in a Mount Sinai School of Medicine study of the rescue workers. These data, and numerous anecdotal accounts of police 6 and firefighters 7 placed on disability due to similar ailments, have made it important to document more clearly the nature and degree of the exposure to potentially toxic substances that took place.
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