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First Responders to the World Trade Center
Chief Ronald Spadafora of the New York Fire Department, who supervised rescue and recovery efforts at the World Trade Center following the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, passed away on June 23 at the age of 63. The cause of Chief Spadafora’s death was acute myeloid leukemia, the result of exposures at ground zero. He is the highest-ranking member of the FDNY to die of illnesses related to 9/11.  The following information about first responders is taken from news articles about Chief Spadafora and from CDC’s World Trade Center Health Program, which provides medical monitoring and treatment for emergency responders, recovery and cleanup workers, and volunteers who helped at the World Trade Center.
From The New York Times:  “[Chief Spadafora’s] cerebral attitude suited his work as a safety supervisor after Sept. 11. He wrote a safety message that became the second or third sheet of the daily incident action plan at ground zero. It described tripping hazards, cutting hazards, breathing hazards and how to mitigate them.”
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In August, The Knoxville News Sentinel reported that a student intern and a researcher at Oak Ridge Associated Universities had devised an experiment to replicate the McCluskey incident in order to study the effects of radiation on the body. By irradiating vials of their own blood for different lengths of time, the researchers hope to generate data that clinicians and first responders can refer to following an exposure incident.

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