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This article discusses the Seveso accident and the lessons that can be learnt from it. Around midday on Saturday 10 July 1976 an explosion occurred in a TCP (2,4,5- trichlorophenol) reactor, at Building B of the Industrie Chimiche Meda Società Azionaria (ICMESA) plant, situated on the border of the municipality of Meda, Italy. A toxic cloud containing 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD) generally accepted as one of the most toxic man-made chemicals, was accidentally released into the environment, seriously contaminating a densely populated area downwind about 6 kilometres long and roughly 1 kilometre wide (including Seveso, Meda, Desio, and Cesano Maderno). The long term health monitoring programmes, which were set up after the accident, were extended to a further seven municipalities.

Additional information

Authors: DE MARCHI B, Istituto di Sociologia Internazionale Gorizia ISIG (IT);FUNTOWICZ S, JRC Ispra (IT);RAVETZ J, Research Methods Consultancy, London (GB)
Bibliographic Reference: Article: International Sociology (1996)
Record Number: 199611075 / Last updated on: 1996-09-30
Original language: en
Available languages: en