Medical Surveillance of Search Dogs Deployed to the World Trade Center and Pentagon: 2001-2006

By Otto, Cynthia M.; Downend, Amanda B. et al. | Journal of Environmental Health, September 2010 | Go to article overview

Medical Surveillance of Search Dogs Deployed to the World Trade Center and Pentagon: 2001-2006


Otto, Cynthia M., Downend, Amanda B., Moore, George E., Daggy, Joanne K., Ranivand, D. Lauren, Reetz, Jennifer A., Fitzgerald, Scott D., Journal of Environmental Health


Introduction

The September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center (WTC) resulted in over one million tons of debris covering 16 acres and massive clouds of particulates and toxins. Numerous environmental hazards including particulate matter, asbestos, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, metal compounds, dioxins, and volatile organic compounds were identified at the WTC site (Banauch, Dhala, & Prezant, 2005). Acute and delayed respiratory symptoms have afflicted the WTC emergency responders (Moline, Herbert, & Nguyen, 2006; Moscato & Yacoub, 2007; Reissman & Howard, 2008).

The Pentagon attack site was smaller and lacked the hazards associated with the massive crushing and combustion of the WTC but still posed a potential risk for responders. A U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (U.S. EPA) air monitoring summary from October 9, 2001, reported only trace levels of asbestos, volatile organic compounds, and other chemicals. U.S. EPA did, however, identify high concentrations of arsenic and antimony in the soot and ash (Lyman, 2003).

In addition to the estimated 40,000 emergency response personnel at the WTC site and over 8,000 responders at the Pentagon, an estimated 250-300 canines responded, including more than 55 dogs at the Pentagon (Otto, Downend, Serpell, Ziemer, & Saunders, 2004; Slensky, Drobatz, Downend, & Otto, 2004). These dogs served three main purposes: detection (e.g., live victims by search and rescue [S&R] dogs, human remains by cadaver dogs, and explosive devices by bomb dogs), patrol (e.g., site security by police dogs), and mental health support (e.g., therapy dogs). At the Fresh Kills Landfill on Staten Island, dogs were used to assist in locating human remains during the sifting and sorting of WTC debris.

Search dog teams started arriving at the WTC on September 11. None of the dogs from outside of the New York City Police Department or the New York-New Jersey Port Authority were present during the tower collapse. The plume of dust, smoke, and toxic components generated by the collapse of the WTC was a major risk factor for human pulmonary complications. The second-highest risk period for both acute and chronic respiratory symptoms in humans occurred during the first two days following the collapse (Herbert et al., 2006; Prezant et al., 2002). Approximately half of the dogs responding to the WTC arrived within the first two days (Otto et al., 2004). The rain on September 14, 2001, likely helped to at least temporarily reduce the overall airborne level of pollutants in lower Manhattan; however, the rain also may have altered the composition of the dusts to which the responders were exposed. In the immediate work zone (Ground Zero), the unrelenting digging and moving of rubble and the uncontained fires resulted in persistent exposure to airborne toxins and particulates.

Although working dogs arrived at the Fresh Kills Landfill on and after September 17, the constant sifting and sorting of debris from both the WTC and pre-existing waste continuously aerosolized particulate matter and toxins. At the Pentagon, where about half of the dogs arrived on September 11, personal protective gear and respiratory protection requirements for the human responders were enforced. The use of respiratory protection at the WTC, particularly in the early days of the response, was variable. Regardless of the site, the S&R dogs were not equipped with respiratory protection and foot protection was only used for a limited number of dogs working the site perimeter.

The manifestation of pulmonary disease in workers responding to the WTC disaster has prompted great concern and speculation about long-term hazards from environmental exposure. The risks and long-term effects of response to the Pentagon (Lyman, 2003) have not had such an obvious manifestation. The S&R dogs shared the exposure risks with the human workers.

Companion animals, particularly dogs, may serve as sentinels of human disease due to several similarities between humans and dogs (van der Schalie et al. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Medical Surveillance of Search Dogs Deployed to the World Trade Center and Pentagon: 2001-2006
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.