by Joe Hoffman
By way of introduction...
This experience is the result of networking at the AFL-CIO Worker's Memorial Day. ERC Advisory Board member Dick Gilgrist introduced the ERC leadership to Gary Jordan, president of UAW Local 647. Gary graciously invited ERC students to participate in an upcoming program. While only one student, Joe Hoffman, was available, we are posting this feedback, to encourage others to attend in the future. The ERC is very indebted to it's board members and local health and safety professionals for their contributions to assure that our students get exceptional opportunities.
Now, about the course:
Chief Ron Siarnicki’s presentation generated lively discussion that continued during the break.
Professor Thomas Bernard answering questions after his presentation.
Panel discussion members from left: Professor Thad Wilson (Ohio University, Athens, OH), Captain Jeff Newman (Sycamore Fire Department), Fire Chief B.J. Jetter (Sycamore Township), District Fire Chief Ron Texter (Cincinnati Fire Department) and Dr. Tom Hales (NIOSH, Cincinnati).
Written by: Amy Turner (April 14-15) and Chris Sparks (April 16-17)
By Cynthia Betcher, Occupational Health Nursing student
Dr. Marilyn Fingerhut, coordinator of the NIOSH Global Collaboration Program, discussed ‘NIOSH Collaborations: Occupational Health and Safety in a Globalized World’ with ERC EOH and OSHE students and faculty on April 6.
By Robin DeJager-Kennedy
On March 13th, 2010,
In picture: 1st row from left- Jay Jones, CIH, Brenda Jones, Robin DeJager-Kennedy, Tiffany Beddoe, Nathan Schneider; 2nd row- Amy Turner, Dr. Sue Davis, Simon Chan, Trinity Hochstetler, Don Goins; 3rd row-Bryan Staley, Jim Bowen, Heather Hochstetler, Rachel Jordon, Eric Glassford, Mike Martin.
The trip began with an early departure from
The process of making bourbon begins with the milling of the grain. Grains used in the making of bourbon whiskey include corn, rye, and malted barley. The grains are first milled, then added to water and cooked to begin the process of turning the starches in the grain into fermentable sugars.
Left: Samples of the different grains used (Woodford). Right: Mash cooker (Four Roses).
Next the yeast is added to the mash, and the mixture is transferred to the fermentation vats.
Left: Yeast being prepared. Right: Fermentation vats (both Four roses).
One impressive feature is that the entire process at Four Roses can be controlled by just one person through the extensive use of computers.
After the fermentation is complete in around 3-5 days, the mash begins the distilling process. Four Roses and Wild Turkey both use a double distilling process, while Woodford Reserve uses triple distilling. Double distilling begins with a beer still, followed by a pot still. The triple distilling done by Woodford uses all pot stills.
Left: Beer still (Four Roses) Right: Pot stills (Woodford).
After the distilling process is complete, the “high wine,” as the distillers call it, more commonly known as “moonshine,” or “white lightning”, is transferred to the charred oak barrels, for aging up to 12 years for the distilleries we visited. One reason that older whiskey is more expensive is that during the aging process, as much as 10-15 gallons can be lost to evaporation; the transfer into and out of the wooden barrel staves as temperatures change during the seasons causes the discoloration seen on older barrels. The distillers call this the “angels share.”
Left: Wild Turkey aging house. Right: Woodford aging house.
Both: Inside Woodford aging house.
After leaving Four Roses, the next stop was Wild Turkey.
The group at Wild Turkey
Woodford Reserve was the final stop on the trip, which was also the oldest of the distilleries visited. They have the longest barrel run of the distilleries, at over 500 yards. This is used to easily transport the empty barrels to the filling station, then move the full barrels to the aging warehouse.
Both: Woodford Reserve barrel runs
Regarding health and safety at the locations, some questions were raised about the level of CO2 produced in the fermentation process. One tour guide explained that the windows were opened whenever the weather allowed for it to promote fresh air exchange. The amount of CO2 being produced was high enough that the emissions were visible when the air in the fermentation room was disturbed. When the guides at other distilleries were asked about CO2 monitoring, they said none was in place. The filled barrels weigh 500 pounds. In some locations, lifts were available for the barrels; manual handling was also observed.
Overall, the distilleries appeared to have safe operations. There was ample signage to indicate hot surfaces, enclosed spaces, and areas with fire potential.
Overall it was a great trip, even with the dreary weather we had. Very educational and tasty (for us bourbon lovers), now we just need to arrange a trip to visit the other 5 distilleries. Thanks Heather for setting it all up!
by Nicholas Newman, D.O.
Over spring break, March 25-26, 2010 a multidisciplinary group of University of Cincinnati students from the industrial hygiene, engineering students, occupational health nursing, and an occupational and environmental medicine resident visited two facilities in Western Kentucky—a trip coordinated by Bruce Taylor, Safety Director at Dotiki Mine and Robert Gray of the District 10 MSHA office. During this two day trip, the group met up with a smaller group of hygiene students from the University of Illinois at Chicago School of Public Health. In preparation for the visit, the group shared presentations regarding mine safety and health, the history of the Dotiki mine, as well as presentations on the rules and regulations relevant to coal mining. Following an uneventful but wet bus ride from Cincinnati through a spring rainstorm, we arrived in Madisonville, KY.
by Megan Lobaugh