The Pros and Cons Of CCTV Cameras

Today, everyone requires a sublime level of security and privacy. From celebrities protecting their personal lives to businessmen using software to enhance security, the world is progressing towards a more secure environment.

People take basic steps to improve privacy in their regular living schedule. But, when it comes to protection, you might think of only one thing – CCTV cameras. They protect people from unwanted and heinous activities. It acts as a shield daily. Apart from the essential utility of protecting and watching over the surroundings, CCTV cameras have different uses, pros, and disadvantages.

To improve the efficiency and effectiveness of these cameras, roadside installed solar light with CCTV camera trends are coming into the market. They are not easily identifiable, which gives an edge over regular CCTV cameras.

pros and cons of CCTV camera

There are many such trends in CCTVs emerging nowadays. Thieves, murderers, and many people identify the red light of the CCTV camera very quickly and avoid doing certain restricted things.

4 Crucial Advantages of CCTV Cameras

The following points outline the significant pros and benefits of having a CCTV camera.

1. Identification of Crime

The most significant advantage of placing a CCTV camera in your locality or business location is that it can help avoid crimes. They can give you the whole nearby angle of others’ houses and shops.

You can locate the culprit with ultra-clear cameras. It helps the policemen and various authorities to find the mischief-makers redhanded. These cameras are highly beneficial whenever you feel that your home or office is becoming an easy target for illegal activity.

2. Control Over Daily Activities

You can conveniently place these cameras anywhere with a wire and power connection. This convenience helps people in monitoring the daily activities of any place. At the workplace, it helps in finding how productive your workforce is.

Placing these cameras at suitable locations in your office will help draft employment policies. These decisions include which employee to promote and demote, which employee should be fired, reward systems, etc. You can visit places keeping a constant look at your home or office activities.

3. Collection of Evidence

Visuals on a CCTV camera can act as evidence at the time of any crime or illegal activity. Sometimes, false statements can be nullified with events captured on the camera. There are many cameras that provide audio features as well.

In the court of law, when a person is required to record their statement, they might forget an essential detail. They might even twist some details to put it in favor of a party. Only a CCTV device can judge the accuracy of these details. Therefore, it functions as an evidence collector.

4. Match Your Records

Your security guard or watchman might miss out on daily recording who is entering or exiting the building. You can match their records with the accurate information provided by the camera. The date and time of any event can be seen through these records. These can further boost any investigation process.

4 Critical Downsides of CCTV Cameras

The following points are the most notable cons of a CCTV camera:

1. Privacy as a Double-Edged Sword

Protection and security is a vital component of these cameras. But, sometimes, these lead to disgraceful controversies. In the professional world, people or employees complain about their privacy being monitored constantly. This privacy exposure is done without their prior consent.

These issues lead to various problems at the workplace. Even at home, there have been cases where people have complained about the roadside public camera. It poses a threat to their privacy. This acts as one of the major downsides of these cameras.

2. Not Cost-Effective

There are dummy cameras as well as real cameras. The former will cost you very little. They are pocket-friendly. On the other hand, real CCTV cameras can be costly. The ones with more features and technicalities will cost you more.

CCTV cameras embedded in solar lights are more expensive than the real ones. It is recommended to buy these solar-powered lights or cameras from reputed companies like HlcBattery to get the best deal.

3. Self-Stabbing

CCTV cameras can act as self-stabbing devices. In other words, criminals can themselves fix these cameras to look at the victim. If they are high-end software engineers or programmers, they can hack the CCTV system or disconnect them to aid their crime further. Therefore, the camera is not a full-fledged protection provider.

4. Unable To End The Crime On The Spot

You can prove crime scene evidence in the court of law and give justice to the victim through these devices. But, you cannot stop the crime from happening. For example, if a murder or theft is being committed, the device will not help stop the crime on the spot. Unlike alarm systems, these do not alert the surroundings about the crime happening on the spot.

Tips To Prepare Your Tires in The Winter

Some drivers may find it difficult to use their cars during the winter. In several areas, the winter is likely to be more hazardous than other ones with snow-covered and icy roads. These weather conditions make roads more challenging than ever.

Yet, your car tires can be the key factors that decide how challenging your experience will be. So, how to take care of your car tires during winter? This article is going to give you some tips and help you prepare your car tires well for the winter weather.

Prepare Your Tires in The Winter

What Kinds of Tires Should We Use in The Winter?

Normally, the car tires are designed differently for each purpose and each road condition. Thus, you should check the types of your car’s tires to have a good preparation before setting off your journey.

1. Snow tires

Snow tires can provide traction the most among all types. Also, you can take advantage of handling control and braking when driving on ice and snow in the winter if you use these tires.

Drivers’ preference is mainly the snow tires due to their features. They can stay pliable and grip the road well in the cold temperature. However, these tires should be used when the snow season starts and removed when the weather becomes warmer.

2. All-weather tires

There are two main models of all-weather tires including one for light snow or rain and one for more hazardous conditions. Some challenging conditions are moderate snow or mud.

The traction of these tires is better than other types of thanks to their tread. The tread can expel water well. Although they are quite supple in the cold weather, they cannot provide much more traction than the snow tires do.

3. All season tires

These tires can provide moderate traction in a lot of conditions such as rain, light snow. Yet, we cannot use them in extreme weather. In other words, we should use this type of tire when the temperature stays above freezing.

Besides, the all-season tires are made of hard compounds so that they can serve you for a long time. They become hardened and offer less traction when the temperature is about 40 degrees Fahrenheit and below.

4. Studded tires

There are small metal points equipped with the tread of these tires. This feature can pierce and grip ice and snow. However, you cannot drive them smoothly on the sidewalk and some states do not allow you to use them.

Some Tips for Tire Maintenance

1. Regular tire tread checking

If you want your car tires to grip the road better, you should pay attention to their treads. According to the NHTSA, the tread depth is 2/32 of an inch at least. To test the tread depth, you can put a coin into a groove of the tread.

But how to use the coin? Keep the coin between your forefinger and your thumb so that you can see Lincoln’s head. If you see the tread obscure Lincoln’s head, it means your car tire tread is safe to use. In case Lincoln’s head is seen, you should replace a new tire.

Tips for Tire Maintenance in Winter

2. Learn to use the tire gauge

Generally, car tires will lose around 1 psi monthly. Moreover, the gas mileage will suffer in case the tires are underinflated. That is when you need to use the tire gauge.

To use the tire gauge, you should take the valve cap off the tire first. Then, you put the open end of the gauge on the valve and apply pressure. At the same time, you should look at the measurement to stop at the right time.

There is a bar measuring psi and it is near to the gauge. It is better to check the pressure the tire is cold so that you will have an accurate result. One more tip is that you should check when your car does not drive for three hours at least.

3. Ensure the tires are appropriately inflated

If your car tires are not properly inflated, you might encounter some problems with the handling. Especially, when the temperature drops, your tire may lose pressure. So that is why you must check the pressure of your tires regularly during the winter.

You can find the proper pressure number for your car’s tires in the manual or inside the car’s door. Besides the tire gauge, you can use the air compressor in order to inflate your car tires. In case they are overinflated, you had better use a small bead to release the air.

4. Learn about the pressure alert

Nowadays, almost all vehicles are equipped with all kinds of sensors. Take the battery and low fuel as examples in this situation. Also, the new model has a monitoring system so that you see the alert if the pressure falls under 25%.

The light will encircle nearly with an exclamation point. So, when you see this alert, it is advised to test the psi and fill the tires to the proper level.

5. Rotate the car tires

If the wheels of your car tires do not have a different size on both the front and back sides, you should rotate them more often. It is recommended to rotate each 8,000 to 12,000 kilometers.

When rotating, the back wheel should move forward the front and vice versa. By doing that, you can distribute the tear or wear evenly. Simultaneously, you should ask for advice from the mechanic and have him check the tire alignment.

Verdict

Briefly, you should follow the tips mentioned above for your safety when driving in the winter. The most important tip is to install snow tires for your car to ensure traction. Besides, you can use tires with snowflakes and mountain icons.

Hopefully, you can make use of these tips and be contented with this article on how to take care of your car tires during winter.

Managing Occupational Risks in the Renewable Energy Sector

According to recent estimates, the renewable energy sector employs 12 million people worldwide. Keeping workers safe is vital in any industry but as the use of clean energies rapidly expands around the globe, more workers are putting themselves at risk climbing wind turbines, maintaining remote solar panels and dealing with flammable biofuels. By identifying and managing the risks involved, a range of safety interventions can be used to reduce the risk of injury to workers.

drone at a wind-farm

Reducing The Risks of Wind Turbine Maintenance

As more wind turbines are constructed, the number of accidents associated with their maintenance and repair has also risen. When a worker is injured on site, a personal injury lawyer will investigate the circumstances and potential causes of the accident. As well as helping to secure appropriate compensation for injured workers, the information gathered can be used to prevent similar accidents happening again.

To further limit the risks to turbine workers, drones are regularly used to carry out hazardous and labor-intensive jobs including the inspection of turbine blades. Drones can now be equipped with extra tools such as AI which enables them to store, analyze and report the data they collect to wind farm managers.

Mitigating the Dangers of Solar Panel Installation

Due to their placement on high roofs and in remote locations, solar energy systems also pose a risk to workers when they are installing, maintaining and repairing solar panels. Taking into account the amount of power generated, working with solar energy is three times more hazardous than wind power and results in up to 150 deaths around the world each year. Risks include exposure to high temperatures, electric shocks and falls, all of which are increased if work has to be carried out in adverse weather conditions.

solar panels pigeon issue

To mitigate these risks, safety interventions to mitigate these risks can include the increased use of specially designed training modules, the automation of certain tasks and changes in shift patterns to avoid fatigue amongst workers.

Reducing Exposure to Hazards in BioFuel Production

While biofuels produced from renewable resources such as plant biomass and vegetable oils are safe to use, they can be dangerous to manufacture. They are highly flammable and can produce potentially hazardous chemical reactions.  These can result in burns and other  injuries caused by exposure to fire, chemicals or explosions. Manufacturers of biofuels should follow the standard safety guidelines for working with chemicals which include storing products correctly, providing adequate personal protection equipment to workers and training them to handle hazardous substances safely.

hazards of biofuel production

As many biofuel businesses are small, in the US they can access consultation services from the Occupational Health and Safety Administration which will give them advice on programs to protect workers and what to do in the event of an emergency.

Bottom Line

As more workers are employed by the renewable industry, the numbers of occupational accidents and injuries are likely to rise. By identifying and managing risks as they become known, safety interventions can be implemented promptly.

Is Bitcoin Even Safe Now?

Blockchain technology is here to stay. Countries all across the world, notably the United States and the European Union, have made efforts to enable the use of these instruments under financial and tax laws and rules. A more cautious approach may be seen in China and other nations. Due to worries regarding price volatility and the possibility for money laundering and criminal activities, several other governments have taken steps to curb their usage.

Companies including gaming platform Steam have stopped accepting bitcoin payments because of its erratic value. However, its usage is growing in popularity, especially among the millennial population, since big corporations such as Microsoft, PayPal, Overstock, and Tesla accept bitcoin payments https://bitcoin-bankbreaker.com/ .

Merchants gain from reduced transaction costs and no chargebacks with bitcoin compared to credit card processors’ 2 percent to 3 percent. With Bitcoin, there is no need to disclose any personal information, such as a name or address. This is a major advantage for clients. By doing so, you protect your personal information and lessen the risk of it being stolen.

is bitcoin safe

Is Bitcoin safe?

Bitcoin is protected against theft by a variety of factors. The mechanisms that underlie bitcoin’s generation and transmission are secure because they are protected by cryptography. There is no single point of failure in Bitcoin’s usage of a distributed ledger technology (DLT), usually known as the blockchain, which provides owners with an auditable record of all their transactions.

Because of the decentralised ledger technology (DLT) used by Bitcoin, all transactions are transparent to the public, but the parties involved in the transactions remain anonymous, eliminating the risk of a data breach.

However, despite the capabilities of DLT and blockchain, attackers continue to target weaknesses in crypto-exchanges and crypto-wallets, the software used to store bitcoin on computers and smartphones and to make payments and swap cryptocurrencies for other digital or traditional currencies.

For the most part, crypto-exchanges and -wallets do not provide the same level of assurance and security as a bank. Even as the value of a bitcoin has risen, so has the amount of viruses and cyber assaults aimed at stealing the currency from users’ accounts, as well. Attacks may be profitable with the value of a bitcoin ranging between $29,000 and $63,000 thus far in 2021. Rather of concentrating their efforts on banks and other big financial institutions, hackers have begun targeting crypto-exchanges. One assault on the KuCoin exchange in February of this year resulted in a theft of $281 million worth of cryptocurrencies and 510,000 user logins totaling $293 million, according to Atlas VPN.

Cyberattacks known as “cryptojacking,” in which malware hijacks a computer’s power and resources in order to mine for cryptocurrency, continue to plague the online community.

It is imperative that bitcoin be used safely and securely as its popularity grows.

How to keep bitcoin wallets safe and sound

Cryptocurrency wallets continue to improve in security despite an increase in cyber assaults and remain one of the best methods to safeguard bitcoin. Each of the many wallet choices has its own set of security concerns.

1. Computerized wallets

When it comes to their bitcoin wallet, users must handle it as if it were a genuine wallet. Using both a hot wallet and a cold wallet is a recommended practice when it comes to bitcoin wallets. Only a limited amount of bitcoin should be stored in a “hot” (online) wallet for day-to-day usage, and the rest should be kept in a “cold” (offline) wallet. This prevents malware from gaining access to a user’s bitcoins by intercepting their wallet password or finding unencrypted wallet data in the device’s RAM.

types-of-bitcoin-wallets

2. Personal digital wallets that aren’t connected to the internet

You may use an offline wallet to verify that your operating system is virus-free and does not save, log, or cache your wallet keys. Loss or theft of a cold wallet results in the permanent loss of all bitcoins contained inside, hence it must be kept offline and physically safe. A hard disc that containing 7,500 bitcoins was thrown away in 2013 because the owner had forgotten about it. As of this writing, the sum would be worth about $322 million, which is around $7.5 million at the time.

To steal bitcoin from a cold wallet, a hacker would need access to the wallet and any related PINs or passwords used to access the wallet’s money, which would require physical access. It’s critical to remember the passcode if your offline wallet is encrypted. If a person dies, their heirs will not have access to the money in this wallet since it isn’t encrypted.

5 Pieces of Equipment That Every Construction Site Needs

If you’re the manager of a successful construction company, you will know all too well how important it is to invest in the right tools and equipment.

The success of your business relies heavily on the effectiveness of your construction tools. Without them, it would extremely difficult for your employees to complete their jobs efficiently.

New technologies are being developed all the time and it’s often tempting to buy the latest, most advanced versions of every tool that you use within your business.

You could spend most of your yearly budget purchasing every updated tool for your construction site but this isn’t necessary if you want to succeed. In fact, doing so could have the opposite effect and may slow your growth significantly.

Instead, investing in a select few pieces of equipment will benefit you more. Allocate a portion of your total budget to get high-quality items that will enhance productivity on your construction site.

Using the best equipment also makes your employees’ tasks much easier to complete and provides you with the opportunity to expand your business operations in the future.

So, if the best option is to spend money on just a few essentials, how do you know which pieces of equipment are crucial for your business?

To help you make a firm decision, here are five pieces of equipment that every construction site should invest in.

1. Welders

There is a range of different welders that you can use on your construction site. The specific types that you choose will depend on your unique needs as a business.

welding-gear

For example, you may wish to invest in a titanium 140 MIG welder. This is an affordable, beginner-friendly option that uses a bare wire and a second flux core. This is an ideal option for welding two thin metal wires together.

Another type of welder to consider is the more versatile TIG welder. This is a more complex option that requires two hands to safely use. You can use a TIG welder to combine a range of metals, including steel, aluminum, copper, and nickel.

Other types of welding that you can use on your construction site include:

  • Stick welding
  • Lazer welding
  • Plasma arc welding

You don’t need to invest in every type of welding equipment. It’s worth doing some deeper research into each option if you’re unsure which type will benefit your business the most.

2. Diggers

Every building or construction needs a foundation to hold it in place and diggers are essential for this task.

Your diggers are needed to dig through stone and rubble, and excavate soil surfaces. They’re sturdy and strong, and can be used on a variety of terrains.

Alongside diggers, you may need additional excavation equipment, loads, and bulldozers to complete your projects.

3. Skips

Construction work accumulated a lot of waste. Keeping a few large skips on your site is necessary to ensure proper disposal of this waste. It also keeps your site clean and tidy.

The best skips for the job are metal options that are welded tightly to prevent leakages or spills.

construction-wastes

You might also benefit from getting some dump trucks, which enable the easy transportation of your waste away from your construction site.

4. Mandatory Signs

Signage is necessary on any construction site to ensure the safety of every employee. Often, they are used to indicate potential hazards and warn employees of moving pieces of equipment or heavy loads.

Safety signs can also be used to indicate the different areas of your construction site and inform people of what jobs need to be carried out in these areas.

Some common construction site signs include:

  • Warning signs
  • High visibility or safety helmet signs
  • Site safety hazards or prohibition
  • Fire points and first aid kits

You can also get custom signs made for your site if there are extra details you want to for your employees.

5. Personal Protective Equipment

It’s vital that you supply personal protective (PPE) equipment to all of your employees on the construction site.

construction-waste-management

PPE protects your employees from the potential dangers of the construction site and reduces the risk of injury. The most common PPE includes goggles, helmets, ear muffs, and gloves.

High visibility jackets are also a key part of your employees’ PPE. They are made from reflective materials that make every employee visible from a far. They are an affordable, yet effective way to reduce the risk of accidents on your construction site.

6 Risks to Prepare For in the Mining Industry

The mining sector is dedicated to the extraction of precious metals and mineral reserves from the earth. The extracted materials are transformed into a mineralized form that serves an economic benefit to both the mining company and the country. However, working in the mining industry has always been dangerous as fatal accidents in mines are a common occurrence worldwide.

mining-industry-hazards

While not all accidents and dangers can be prevented, there are some steps you should take to improve the safety for your workers. Failing to put in adequate safety measures could see you facing serious penalties. Here, we’ll look at 6 risks in the mining industry to be aware of and how to combat them.

1. Dust exposure

While dust may not sound like a particularly harmful risk, it can lead to serious respiratory problems. It is such a common occurrence in the mining industry that it’s been given the term “coal mine dust lung disease”. Some types of respiratory problems cannot be cured, so preventing them is key to your workers safety.

There are numerous dust prevention methods that can be used to combat the issue. Preventing dust from becoming airborne is key and it can be done through water. The type of machinery you use can also determine how much dust is released. Looking at ways to prevent dust build-up is key.

2. Explosions

One of the more serious risks in the industry is the risk of an explosion. This is a particular worry for underground miners. The pipes within underground mines tend to contain flammable gases and chemicals. So, if the ventilation system isn’t maintained, it does pose a risk of an explosion.

Workers should continually check the ventilation system in mines and warning signs should be placed around the mine to remind them of safe practices.

3. Cave ins

There have been a number of cave-ins around the world that have caused devastation within the mining sector. In 2019, 21 miners died in China due to a roof collapse. It is a serious risk that can be difficult to fully prevent. Carrying out regular structural inspections is crucial to maintain the safety of your workers.

4. Electrical hazards

A number of electrical machines need to be used during the mining process. Unfortunately, this increases the risk of shock, fires and falls. If a worker were to get an electric shock, or trip over the equipment, you could end up having to make a large pay-out. You should always have adequate miners’ insurance from Arthur J. Gallagher.

5. Fire

All mines present some kind of fire risk. Even an excess level of dust in the mine can trigger a fire or explosion. The electrical equipment also poses a risk to workers. It’s a good idea to have a fire safety audit carried out before work is undertaken.

6. Noise

Finally, miners are also exposed to high levels of noise. They should be provided with ear protectors to prevent permanent damage. You’ll need to ensure you are providing high-quality protectors for adequate protection.

These are just 6 of the risk’s miners face. It is one of the most dangerous jobs in the world, but there are ways to minimise the risks. Making sure you are adequately insured is important. If your workers are to suffer an accident, they need to know they will be protected. Taking appropriate steps to improve the safety of the workplace is important for both you and your employees.

4 Things to Do When You’ve Faced Identity Theft Online

Our current level of technological development allows online users to get jobs on a different continent or communicate naturally with people miles away. We have instant access to information and easy access to technology but we’re also more exposed to risks than ever.

While being online browsing and using social media is something millions of people do every day, very few of them are aware of the many Identity Theft scams that run online (among others). According to the 2021 Identity Fraud Study by Javelin Strategy & Research, Americans lost around $56 Bn to ID fraud in 2020.

ID theft online is a sneaky thing because the victim doesn’t take notice until it’s too late to do anything to stop the damage. When they learn something is wrong, all they can do is try to mitigate the disaster. So, if you’ve faced ID theft and you’ve become a victim or believe you may be one in the future, here are the four main steps to take:

Identity Theft Online

1. Get Extra Protection

Start by checking all your accounts (banking, email, social media, and others). Change the current passwords and implement two-factor authentication on the ones that allow it. Also, check with your bank and let them know you think someone stole your ID.

Next, add an identity theft service that protects your digital and financial identity by setting up watchlists and services that monitor your most important accounts.

2. Put a Fraud Alert on your Credit Report

One of the biggest inconveniences of ID fraud is a damaged credit score. This can have long-lasting effects that continue even after you’ve dealt with most of the aftermath of being an ID theft victim.

Plus, a fraud alert on your credit report lets anyone checking it know something is wrong. So, in case someone uses your data to get online loans, apply for a job, or get a credit card, the fraud alert will warn them to stop the action and alert you (the owner).

To put a fraud alert, you only have to contact one of the three credit reporting agencies in the country. Since they share a database, once a fraud alert is placed by one of the agencies, it will notify the other two as well. A fraud alert is free and it lasts for one year (it can be prolonged) – it’s an easy-to-use protection method in case of emergency.

3. Check your Credit Card Reports & Your Accounts

Once you place a fraud alert, you’ll receive a free credit card report from each agency. Use these to look for evidence of fraud such as new accounts you didn’t apply for, employers you’ve never heard of, payments you’ve never made, and anything out of the ordinary.

Also, make sure to regularly check your accounts for vanishing amounts or transactions you haven’t authorized.

4. Talk to the Authorities

While there’s not much they can do until you are sure your identity has been compromised, they will provide guidance on the steps to take until then. You can also familiarize yourself with the process, in case fraud is confirmed (so you’ll be able to act fast).

In the US, you’ll have to report the event to the FTC and the police (in that order). Make sure you know what data to include in these reports so all your accounts are covered. Once this step is complete, you will have to start the long journey of contacting each agency, company, organization, and more that provide you a service or might be convinced to open new accounts or provide services in your name.

Wrap Up

ID theft is a lucrative line of business and even though there are many new technologies that could make a difference in the near future (like blockchain), for now, it’s best to practice caution when navigating online.

What Are the Risks of the Oil and Gas Industry?

While it’s currently necessary, there is a need to identify better alternative energy sources because of the risks of the oil and gas industry. There are risks to the environment and also to people, including workers in the industry.

The oil and gas industry is the largest source of emissions of greenhouse gases in the United States, despite being tightly regulated.

The following are things to know about the different type of human and environmental risks that come with the extraction and processing of oil.

Risks of the Oil and Gas Industry

Employee Dangers

Working in the oil industry tends to be very lucrative, and these jobs are hard to fill often. The pay is why people continue in the industry, despite the risk. Trends seem to show worsening fatality rates among workers in the industry, particularly in Texas. Texas is the largest oil-producing state in the country. There were more than 530 fatal occupational industries in Texas in 2017 related to this industry.

Since 2016, fatality rates have been increasing.

Oil production went up almost 25% in the U.S. between 2017 and 2018, which may play a role. There are more demanding deadlines for production and an increased quantity of work, which could mean more significant risks for workers.

Specific Worker Risks

There are many, but a few of the more common risks that workers in oil and gas face on the job every day include:

  • Vehicle collisions when workers and equipment are being transported to and from well sites which are often remotely located and require long-distance travel. Around 4 of every ten workers killed on the job in the industry die because of a highway vehicle accident.
  • Being stuck between moving vehicles, equipment, fall equipment and high-pressure lines leads to on-site injuries and deaths.
  • When someone works in the oil and gas industry, they are at risk of being exposed to explosions and fires because of the ignition of vapors, gases and chemicals that are highly flammable. Gases and vapors, as well as hydrogen sulfide, are released from wells, equipment and trucks.
  • Another considerable risk for workers in this industry are falls because often, employees have to access equipment and platforms that are high above the ground.
  • High-pressure lines and equipment create hazards, including the potential for compressed gas exposure.

There are around 1.2 million oil and gas production facilities across the country, ranging from active wells to processing plants. More than 12 million people live within ½ mile of these locations, and below are some risks they might face.

Community Exposure

Fossil fuel pollution is sometimes called an invisible killer because it can contribute to heart and respiratory diseases over time, which are leading causes of death.

environmental risks of oil and gas industry

Fossil fuels also leak substances into the soil and drinking water sources that can be toxic, cause cancer, birth defects and contribute to liver damage.

Research shows the industry’s impact most heavily affects minority, low-income and rural communities because they are closest to these sites and may be most exposed to toxins.

There’s also a link between volatile organic compounds and the emission of nitrogen oxide that create smog. Smog is linked to a higher risk of asthma in the young and elderly, leading to missed school and workdays and increased hospitalizations.

Behind only coal-fired power plants, oil and gas production is one of the largest sources of greenhouse gases in the country.

Wildlife Disruption

The extraction of oil and gas disrupts natural balance and wildlife in addition to harming humans.

Vehicle traffic, noises and movement can impact how animals breed, nest and communicate. The habitats of many species can be broken up by the introduction of fences, roads and powerlines.

When there are oil spills, these often kill large numbers of animals and create long-lasting marine ecosystem damage. For example, the 2010 BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico led to oil spreading for 68,000 square miles over the sea.

That incident alone killed around one million seabirds, 1,000 sea turtles, and 5,000 marine mammals.

Even though we don’t always hear about them, there are often more minor spills. For example, in 2020, there were nearly 2,180 spills in Colorado, New Mexico and Wyoming.

Finally, when the needed infrastructure for oil and gas extraction is developed, it significantly and negatively impacts wildlands. Wilderness is destroyed, and the damage can’t be reversed typically.

There are more than 12 million acres of public lands being used for the production of fossil fuels. To make this happen, vegetation has to be removed, and even when the sites are abandoned, it can take centuries for the land to recover.

Dealing with Household Hazardous Wastes

Household Hazardous Waste (HHW) are leftover household products that contain corrosive, toxic, ignitable, or reactive ingredients such as paints, cleaners, oils, batteries, pesticides etc. HHW contain potentially hazardous ingredients and require special care and safe disposal. 

household-hazardous-wastes

A typical home can contain a vast array of household hazardous wastes used for cleaning, painting, beautifying, lubricating and disinfecting the house, yard, workshop and garage. The chemical-based household products from a single home may seem insignificant; but, when millions of homes use similar products, handling, storing and disposing them improperly may have the combined impact and becomes a major problem.

The health and safety of our families, neighborhoods and environment is threatened when household hazardous waste is stored or disposed of improperly. These products should not be put in the garbage bins or disposed in the storm drains or burned, as they pose a threat to human health and the environment. Thousands of consumer products are hazardous. The general categories are:

  • Automotive products: Gasoline, motor oil, antifreeze, windshield wiper fluid, car wax and cleaners, lead-acid batteries, brake fluid, transmission fluid etc.
  • Home improvement products: Paint, varnish, stain, paint thinner, paint stripper, caulk, adhesives etc.
  • Pesticides: Insecticide and insect repellent, weed killer, rat and mouse poison, pet spray and dip, wood preservative etc.
  • Household cleaners: Furniture polish and wax, drain opener, oven cleaner, tub and tile cleaner, toilet bowl cleaner, spot remover, bleach, ammonia etc.
  • Other: Household batteries, cosmetics, pool chemicals, shoe polish, lighter fluid, prescription medicines etc.

Each year, thousands of people are injured by exposure or accident involving hazardous household products.  Because of the dangers they pose. These products require special awareness, handling, and disposal.  In order to protect health and environment, every consumer should know how to properly use, store, and dispose of hazardous household products. 

Many common household products contain hazardous chemicals.  Once released into the environment, these substances may pose a serious threat to living organisms.  Small quantities of hazardous substances can accumulate over time to reach dangerous levels and contaminate the air, water, and soil. 

Here are some basic guidelines for managing household hazardous wastes:

  • Select the least toxic item and buying only the minimum quantity as required.
  • Read the entire label carefully for health warnings and use good judgment when choosing any product.
  • Store the product at a safe place and away from the children reach.
  • Avoid aerosol products.
  • Always use hazardous products in a well-ventilated area.
  • Never leave containers open.  Many products are volatile, evaporating quickly into the air. 
  • Always seal containers tightly after use.
  • Never mix chemicals and hazardous products. 
  • Do not use spent chemical containers for other purposes.
  • Wear protective clothing such as gloves and a mask when dealing with any hazardous material. 
  • Wash clothing exposed to hazardous materials separately from other clothes.
  • Do not eat, drink or smoke while using hazardous products.
  • Clean up the place after using hazardous products. Carefully seal products and properly refasten all caps.
  • Never put hazardous products in food or beverage containers.
  • Keep products away from sources of heat, spark, flame or ignition.
  • Know where flammable materials are located in your home and how to extinguish them.
  • Keep a multi-purpose dry chemical fire extinguisher in your home.

How To Deal With Domestic Oil Spills

Having your own private oil tank can be beneficial as you do not have to rely upon the main network which is typically less cost-effective and gives you less control over energy consumption. But having an oil tank installed also has its drawbacks. You have to be extra careful with it as not only its installation is complex but its maintenance requires a lot of hard work.

 

From ensuring that all the complex technicalities of installation are met to ensuring that the tank is in proper condition to function, now and then, you have to be careful at every single step.

And if you fail to do so or even lag slightly, you would expose yourself to the possibility of experiencing oil leakage or oil spills.

how to deal with domestic oil spills

What happens if domestic oil spills?

If your tank starts spilling oil, the oil won’t just stay there but it will flow out to contaminate the adjacent areas. And if left untreated, it could go on to contaminate groundwater and soil.

This could lead to contamination of wells and water supplies of adjacent properties. Once the water supplies are contaminated, it could cause a myriad of drinking water problems. For example, oil damages the plastic water pipes so when it seeps into the underground water channel, it can affect the water pipelines that will ultimately lead to bad taste and foul odor in the drinking water.

Apart from this, oil spills can have a serious impact on human health as well. The first threat to human health spilled oil is through contaminated drinking water.

The second harmful impact they can have on our health is through disastrous fumes. As all petroleum products contain volatile compounds therefore when the oil is spilled it releases gases. If people nearby inhale these fumes or are surrounded by the vapors that linger in the air longer than usual, they can experience eye irritation, nausea, dizziness, headaches, drowsiness, and disorientation.

However, these symptoms are related to short term exposure to oil fumes. When a person is exposed for a very long time, which could happen if the smell of the fumes does not erupt shortly, then he could experience more serious conditions that would require a doctor’s consultation.

Skin irritation can also arise due to prolonged exposure or contact with the fumes. One could experience redness, severe irritation, and swelling.

How to handle oil spills at home?

Oil spills happen at both small and large scales. The larger ones require proper oil contamination treatment but the smaller ones can be dealt at home. But, this will require all of your attention and efforts. However, a domestic oil spill is not always easy to deal with, especially when the spill is massive and gets out of your hands.

 

Regardless of that, we should know a few tips and tricks to be well prepared to handle any such mishap because once an oil spill skyrockets, it causes severe damage to the surrounding and human health -as we discussed above.

The first thing that you must do when you have an oil tank placed in your residence, always check it regularly to look for any rusting or other damage to the tank. This way you can easily be one step ahead to deal with any leakage.

Somehow, if you fail to attend to any such damage and the leakage eventually occurs but it is small, place a pan where the tank is leaking to collect the spilling oil before it even touches the ground.

If this too gets out of hands and the oil starts spilling on the floor, try blocking that area to prevent the oil from spreading any further. You can do this by placing small dams as barriers and if that does not work then try using absorbents like cat litter, or sand.

If the flow of the oil dripping from the split of the tank gets a bit controlled then you can easily apply a sealant on the split. However, this is not a permanent solution as sealant only works temporarily. But this should give you enough time to contact professionals who deal with oil contamination treatment.

On the other hand, you have to protect yourself and your family in the midst of dealing with this chaos. This first thing you should do when your home smells of oil is to ensure maximum ventilation.

Open all the windows as well as doors so that the strong oil smell does not accumulate inside. This will also help in warding off the harmful petroleum fumes.

The next thing you have to do is to make sure that all of your family members, and especially children and pets are away from the spill location. If possible, have them evacuate the house for at least the time when the house is cleared of the smell and fumes.

While dealing with domestic oil spill, make sure that your skin and clothes do not come in contact with the oil. Remember to avoid smoking, drinking, and eating during and after you finish dealing with the oil spill. Also, try to examine the tank for the origin of the leak, and before doing that, make sure that the oil supply is turned off.

Who deals with the cleaning of oil contamination?

You can take care of the oil spill to some extent, but cleaning is entirely another process. All the things that have been contaminated with the oil, be it water, ground, or soil, only a team of specialists can do it properly.

Therefore, you should first call the professional before taking on the mission of curing the leakage flow, and when the team arrives, you leave the place immediately to ensure your health.

Bottom line

Dealing with domestic oil contamination might not be impossible but it is not recommended. The only thing you must do after calling the professionals is to ensure no one is around the site. Then let the expert team, who come with efficient methods of oil spill clean Up & bioremediation, take care of the rest.