Little attention was paid to lead poisoning in Norway before 1930. In 1931-33, however, Dr Harald Engelsen, a naval surgeon, reported to the National Insurance Administration more than 40 cases among shipyard workers. The first worker in which he diagnosed lead poisoning had consulted other doctors, but only got a symptomatic diagnosis. Dr Engelsen was then consulted by several others with similar symptoms. At the outset his diagnosis was doubted and a considerable disagreement ensued with colleagues and yard representatives; he was compared with Dr Stockmann in Henrik Ibsen's play An Enemy of the People. The controversy escalated. A commission appointed by the government to examine the matter concluded that there had been cases of lead poisoning in the shipyard, that mandatory requirements had not been strictly complied with, and that monitoring of working conditions had been fragmentary. Most of the workers were granted compensation and pensions. For a publication on lead poisoning, Dr Engelsen was awarded the University of Oslo's gold medal, and for his work for improving seamen's health and welfare he was awarded the St. Olav Order. In 1938 he was appointed head of medical services in the Royal Norwegian Navy.
The Russian nuclear submarine K-27 suffered a loss of coolant accident in 1968 and with nuclear fuel in both reactors it was scuttled in 1981 in the outer part of Stepovogo Bay located on the eastern coast of Novaya Zemlya. The inventory of spent nuclear fuel on board the submarine is of concern because it represents a potential source of radioactive contamination of the Kara Sea and a criticality accident with potential for long-range atmospheric transport of radioactive particles cannot be ruled out. To address these concerns and to provide a better basis for evaluating possible radiological impacts of potential releases in case a salvage operation is initiated, we assessed the atmospheric transport of radionuclides and deposition in Norway from a hypothetical criticality accident on board the K-27. To achieve this, a long term (33 years) meteorological database has been prepared and used for selection of the worst case meteorological scenarios for each of three selected locations of the potential accident. Next, the dispersion model SNAP was run with the source term for the worst-case accident scenario and selected meteorological scenarios. The results showed predictions to be very sensitive to the estimation of the source term for the worst-case accident and especially to the sizes and densities of released radioactive particles. The results indicated that a large area of Norway could be affected, but that the deposition in Northern Norway would be considerably higher than in other areas of the country. The simulations showed that deposition from the worst-case scenario of a hypothetical K-27 accident would be at least two orders of magnitude lower than the deposition observed in Norway following the Chernobyl accident.
The growth of maritime oil transportation in the Gulf of Finland (GoF), North-Eastern Baltic Sea, increases environmental risks by increasing the probability of oil accidents. By integrating the work of a multidisciplinary research team and information from several sources, we have developed a probabilistic risk assessment application that considers the likely future development of maritime traffic and oil transportation in the area and the resulting risk of environmental pollution. This metamodel is used to compare the effects of two preventative management actions on the tanker collision probabilities and the consequent risk. The resulting risk is evaluated from four different perspectives. Bayesian networks enable large amounts of information about causalities to be integrated and utilized in probabilistic inference. Compared with the baseline period of 2007-2008, the worst-case scenario is that the risk level increases 4-fold by the year 2015. The management measures are evaluated and found to decrease the risk by 4-13%, but the utility gained by their joint implementation would be less than the sum of their independent effects. In addition to the results concerning the varying risk levels, the application provides interesting information about the relationships between the different elements of the system.
1,687 registered captains and mates from a Norwegian census in 1970 were monitored up to 1987. By matching the data from the census with data from the Norwegian Cancer Registry we discovered 104 cases of cancer. A control group of 376 was chosen among those without cancer. A nested case-control study design was used. The material was analysed using multivariate logistic regression. Increased risk of developing cancer was found in the group of seamen who had been working on tankers, especially among seamen who had been working as mate on these tankers. Exposure to chemicals is the major factor distinguishing tankers from other ships. Mates are exposed to chemicals while captains are not. The study indicates the presence of carcinogenic agents on these tankers.
The paper discusses the currently introduced radiation-and-hygienic system for zoning atomic shipbuilding plants, in accordance with which three radiation-and-hygienic zones (a strict regime zone, a controlled approach zone, and a free regime zone) are established at the plant site and two zones (a sanitary-and-protective zone and a follow-up zone) are also established outside the plant site.