Bea Riemschneider, Editorial Director
MaryBeth DiDonna, Editor
Editorial Advisory Board
Charles W. Berndt, C. W. Berndt Associates Ltd.
Adam Giandomenico, Particles Plus Inc.
Scott Mackler, Cleanroom Consulting LLC
Gregg A. Mosley, Biotest Laboratories Inc.
Robert Nightingale, Cleanroom Garments
Bipin Parekh, Ph. D., Entegris Inc.
Michael Rataj, Aramark Cleanroom Services
Howard Siegerman, Ph. D., Siegerman and Associates LLC
Scott Sutton, Ph. D., Microbiology Network Inc.
Art Vellutato, Jr., Veltek Associates Inc.
Bob Vermillion, CPP/Fello w, RMV Technology Group LLC
SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT, SALES
ADVAN TAGE BUSINESS MEDIA
Chief Executive Officer
Chief Financial Officer/Chief Operating Officer
ADVAN TAGE BUISNESS MEDIA, LLC
100 Enterprise Dr., Suite 600, Rockaway, NJ 07866
Phone: 973-920-7000; Fax: 973-920-7541
Vol. 20 • No. 1
FROM THE EDITOR 4 March/April 2017 • www.cemag.us
Complacency Can Cost Lives
Sometimes it’s easy to decide, “You know what? I just don’t care anymore.” Especially at the workplace. We all get bogged down with too much work from time to time, and we may have other things on our mind — social issues,
family life, money problems, and other pressing demands.
Life can be stressful. It happens to everyone.
For those involved in cleanrooms and contamination control, however, apathy is a dangerous risk that may endanger
health and lives. Bacterial and fungal contamination can
occur in even the best-run cleanroom and lab facilities, and
therefore it’s imperative to maintain good cleaning schedules and stay on top of
errors. Quality control is not to be taken lightly. Standards and procedures exist for
a reason, and straying from them could mean disaster.
Controlled Environments has frequently addressed the steps that need to be
taken in order to prevent disaster. In this issue, our “Ask the Facilities Gal” column
discusses the proper handling of hazardous materials, and cites major catastrophes
in India, Canada, Taiwan, and the U.S. as examples of what can happen if proper
procedures are not followed. Even the tiniest detail, if overlooked, can cost millions of dollars in damage. Buildings and facilities can be destroyed in the blink of
an eye. Dozens or hundreds of jobs can disappear. Lives can be lost.
The Cleanroom Tip at the back of every issue is contributed by our readers,
and lists some simple ways to prevent contamination at your facility. Whether it’s
a specific cleaning method or advice on how to properly don and doff cleanroom
attire, these short tips will remind you that, sometimes, the “keep it simple, stupid”
method might be the best way to approach things in your own facility — in other
words, don’t forget the small stuff. We encourage you to contact us with your own
tips on keeping your cleanroom clean and up to code.
In our Trending on the Web section, you will find a link to a recent blog post on
the Controlled Environments website about the ongoing trial of a pharmacist from
a Massachusetts compounding center that’s blamed for a 2012 meningitis outbreak
which resulted in the deaths of over five dozen people across the U.S. Unsanitary
cleanroom conditions and lax business practices may have led to a fungal contamination in injectable spinal drugs. Other blog posts on this topic describe the
“locker room atmosphere” amongst the cleanroom workers, including horseplay
and allegations of inappropriate banter in front of a female employee.
Slacking off in the workplace can carry numerous consequences. You may
embarrass your company, lose your job, endanger coworkers, and — depending
on your industry — threaten people’s lives. Keep this in mind when things get to
be too much, and find productive ways to handle it.