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The lounge Relax, take a break from photo and camera talk - have a chat about something else for a change. Just keep it clean and polite!

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Old 11th March 2018
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Re: Salisbury nerve agent - just what the hell is that stuff?

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(on that note, the human body is actually a doughnut, so the passage from mouth to anus is in fact an external surface).
Now there's a thought...............Would never have occurred to me..
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Old 11th March 2018
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Re: Salisbury nerve agent - just what the hell is that stuff?

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So how else would you explain it to the general public? The risk is low, clearly, as no-one else has been affected, and the recommendation to wash clothes is a precautionary measure.

I think it is important to keep the public informed and on your side, but it seems to me that one is damned, whatever one says!

Sorry if I'm sounding a bit irascible, but I've been on the 'other side' of this kind of situation.

Ian
She could try, I'm not a microbiologist but I know how vague the word is.
Eg Lorry driver reads the sign, the bridge is not low, driver hears a loud crunch and comes to a sudden stop.
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Old 11th March 2018
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Re: Salisbury nerve agent - just what the hell is that stuff?

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Now there's a thought...............Would never have occurred to me..
Should make surgery easy. Just turn the body inside out.
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Old 11th March 2018
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Re: Salisbury nerve agent - just what the hell is that stuff?

One of our members at the Apple group lived just around the corner from Skripal's house, she moved out last weekend and handed the keys to the new owner who then found the road was blocked so that coould not get their moving waggon with the furniture to the house
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Old 11th March 2018
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Re: Salisbury nerve agent - just what the hell is that stuff?

There has been a lot of that. I was chatting to a friend last night - he went out to Homebase during the afternoon and nothing was happening. When he got back his road was blocked by a thumping great army transporter, the road was closed and he had to park some way away (presumably with his new wardrobe in the back of the car).

The saddest thing, apart from the direct victims of the poison, is that the city's main cemetery is closed while the graves of Skripal's wife and son are examined. A sensible precaution, but sad for those who wanted to come and pay their respects on Mothers' Day.

John
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Old 11th March 2018
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Re: Salisbury nerve agent - just what the hell is that stuff?

The advice to wash clothes indicates there is a risk, however low, and I do feel it would be useful if the public had a little more information regarding what the symptoms of contamination might be.
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Old 11th March 2018
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Re: Salisbury nerve agent - just what the hell is that stuff?

It's only one pub that's cordoned off, John, and being an old market town we have many many others in which I'm sure the esteemed denizens of the Fourth Estate could feel safe and happy

John

Last edited by Bikie John; 11th March 2018 at 07:32 PM. Reason: Typo
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Old 11th March 2018
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Re: Salisbury nerve agent - just what the hell is that stuff?

Someone I know (not me obviously) spent a couple of days in a government research station near Salisbury (not P.D. obviously) some years ago with his head in a fume cupboard setting up some video gear.

Whatever it was that they allegedly studied there could slowly eat it's way though stuff like rubber gloves apparently - which would not be a good thing in the long run.

He survived the experience, though he has become older and a bit odd.
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Old 11th March 2018
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Re: Salisbury nerve agent - just what the hell is that stuff?

I have been monitoring the news for a while before commenting. One thing, which is very concerning is the advice given to double bag things and store them. IMO a crazy suggestion, who in their right mind is going to sit on such contaminated items in their house. Imagine a typical family under those circumstances you aint going to hold onto an unknown risk you would dispose of it further adding to the spread of what ever it is. There should be the support mechanism in place to hand over said items. Just doesnt sit right with me. I feel for those people in that situation dealing with what is an unknown quantity at time of typing.
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Old 11th March 2018
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Re: Salisbury nerve agent - just what the hell is that stuff?

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The one big advantage in Litvinenko's case was that radioactivity was used, and having realised that was the case, was easy to check for.
I don't think it's quiet as simple as that for polonium contamination. IIRC polonium is an alpha emitter, which spits out helium nuclei. Alpha particles have a very short range and are easily stopped by a piece of paper. If ingested the particles won't be detected externally, but will damage the adjacent tissues and will continue to do so for a long time. I don't think there's anything that can be done for the victim. At least for nerve agents you can swallow a few deadly nightshade berries, which contain atropine!

Jim
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Old 12th March 2018
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Re: Salisbury nerve agent - just what the hell is that stuff?

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I have been monitoring the news for a while before commenting. One thing, which is very concerning is the advice given to double bag things and store them. IMO a crazy suggestion, who in their right mind is going to sit on such contaminated items in their house. Imagine a typical family under those circumstances you aint going to hold onto an unknown risk you would dispose of it further adding to the spread of what ever it is. There should be the support mechanism in place to hand over said items. Just doesnt sit right with me. I feel for those people in that situation dealing with what is an unknown quantity at time of typing.
Totally agree!
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Re: Salisbury nerve agent - just what the hell is that stuff?

I suppose the wider question that arises from all of this is why the damn stuff is being manufactured in the first place? Is there really no end to Man's depravity?
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Old 12th March 2018
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Re: Salisbury nerve agent - just what the hell is that stuff?

Natural extension of work on weed killers and insecticides. Perhaps the development of the insecticides and weedkillers has been funded by devopment of human killing chemicals.
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Old 12th March 2018
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Re: Salisbury nerve agent - just what the hell is that stuff?

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Originally Posted by Jim Ford View Post
I don't think it's quiet as simple as that for polonium contamination. IIRC polonium is an alpha emitter, which spits out helium nuclei. Alpha particles have a very short range and are easily stopped by a piece of paper. If ingested the particles won't be detected externally, but will damage the adjacent tissues and will continue to do so for a long time. I don't think there's anything that can be done for the victim. At least for nerve agents you can swallow a few deadly nightshade berries, which contain atropine!

Jim
You are quite right Jim, that once in the body it is a lot more difficult to detect, but there are ways when the amounts are significant, as in Litvinenko's case. However, the point I was making is that it was quite easy to detect on surfaces and therefore it was possible to relatively quickly check an area to see if it was contaminated. Furthermore, one could follow the trail which could take you to other areas which you might not have expected to be involved. I'm guessing that with chemical contaminants it might not be possible to check in 'real time' as it were, and that will extend the time taken to clear an area or to identify an involved area.

The other thing in Litvinenko's case was that he was able to give details of his movements and therefore allow other areas to be quickly followed up. That probably isn't the case with Skripal.

I have great sympathy for the folks on the ground doing a difficult job is such a public arena. And of course for the residents of Salisbury it can be equally frustrating, but ultimately it is for their own protection.
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  #30  
Old 12th March 2018
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Re: Salisbury nerve agent - just what the hell is that stuff?

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Originally Posted by timboo View Post
I have been monitoring the news for a while before commenting. One thing, which is very concerning is the advice given to double bag things and store them. IMO a crazy suggestion, who in their right mind is going to sit on such contaminated items in their house. Imagine a typical family under those circumstances you aint going to hold onto an unknown risk you would dispose of it further adding to the spread of what ever it is. There should be the support mechanism in place to hand over said items. Just doesnt sit right with me. I feel for those people in that situation dealing with what is an unknown quantity at time of typing.
I tend to agree. Where would you keep the said garments? In your wardrobe?

From the little that we know it seems that these nerve agents are water soluble (and so can be washed away), and that once exposed to the natural environment they have a limited half-life. Maintaining toxic concentrations n the wild would probably be difficult.

The problem with dry cleaning is that garments are cleaned by exposure to concentrated vapours of organic solvents in what is effectively a closed system. This being the case any contamination removed from your clothes could readily be redistributed to others send only for stain removal, so it quickly becomes a pointless exercise.

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I suppose the wider question that arises from all of this is why the damn stuff is being manufactured in the first place? Is there really no end to Man's depravity?
My thoughts entirely. Dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane, organophosphates, tributyltin oxide, etc. were all developed with perfectly legitimate aims and objectives in mind. Their appalling side effects were an unexpected consequence.

But what on earth does anyone want or need deadly nerve agents for?

Worse still, there seems to be no shortage of people who support the regimes that make and use these dreadful materials.
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