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Chemical Safety Board eyes ‘a lot of progress’ in FY 2021

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Washington — Citing the recent hiring of chemical incident investigators and the ongoing publication of safety documents, Chemical Safety Board Chair and CEO Katherine Lemos is confident the agency “remains well on our way to really make a lot of progress” in fiscal year 2021.

Addressing public comments near the conclusion of CSB’s first business meeting of FY 2021, Lemos pointed to the release of safety materials and supporting documents, as well as a quarterly meeting schedule, as evidence of the agency’s transparency.

The Oct. 29 meeting did not include updates regarding CSB’s boardroom staffing gaps, as Lemos remains the lone member of the board – forming what she called in September a quorum of one. An agency spokesperson addressed a request for comment by email, writing, “The CSB welcomes additional board members and looks forward to their nomination and confirmation.”

Lemos said in September that CSB – within the past year – has hired seven new chemical incident investigators and is evaluating more than 300 applicants for two open positions. During the meeting, she noted that “a lot of these investigations, they changed hands, and you need to bring somebody else up to speed.”

 

In her closing remarks, Lemos welcomed further collaboration from industry stakeholders.

“All of us share a strong interest in preventing chemical incidents in the future, and we need to work together as a community to do so, and I appreciate all of you as our community in helping us to make the chemical industry safer,” Lemos said.

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