Saturday, May 22, 1999

Science teachers hold
1st meet reaching from
Kauai to Samoa

Today's sessions focused on ... improper
storage or use of chemicals, illegal "importation"
of biological specimens, and unsafe
classroom and lab settings.

Star-Bulletin staff


Science teachers throughout Hawaii today attended a spring conference spread across different island sites, including American Samoa.

Participating were delegates in Honolulu, Hilo, Lihue, Kahului and Pago Pago, American Samoa.

The first Hawaii Science Teachers Association conference held at multiple sites was made possible by the Hawaii Interactive Television System and international PEACESAT system.

The association's fall conference addressed new procedures and regulations on science safety.

Today's sessions focused on problems related to improper storage or use of chemicals, illegal "importation" of biological specimens, and classroom and lab settings that fail to meet new safety standards and therefore face high fines.

The University of Hawaii, for example, has been fined $1.8 million for violating hazardous waste laws after leaking pesticide containers were found on the Big Island and Kauai.

Big Island Civil Defense Director Harry Kim was the keynote speaker today, addressing his TV audience from the University of Hawaii-Hilo. Darcy Bevens from the Center for the Study of Active Volcanoes also spoke from that location.

In Samoa, a panel coordinated by Netini Sene of the Department of Education there was to discuss "Science Safety Issues in Samoa."

On Oahu, Justin Mew, Hawaii department science specialist, and Marilyn T. Aguilar, with environmental health/waste management, were to discuss department science safety issues.

"Basic Biological and Chemical Safety in Laboratories" was the topic for UH biological safety officer Hubert Olipares and chemical hygiene officer Peter Batsakis.

Teachers gathered at Kapiolani Community College in Honolulu and at UH-Hilo, Kauai and Maui community colleges, and the LBJ Hospital in Pago Pago.

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