OEH News

The latest news from the Department of Occupational and Environmental Health at the University of Iowa College of Public Health.

Janssen offers farm safety reminders

Brandi Janssen, director of Iowa's Center for Agricultural Safety and Health, recently talked about farm safety in light of a recent grain bin death in Waterloo. (Iowa Public Radio) Published August 16, 2017

Long hours on farm equipment can cause muscle fatigue

Time spent operating farm machinery can cause muscle fatigue and increase your risk of other injuries, even though it doesn’t seem like you’re exerting yourself. Operating nearly any farm vehicle causes the driver to experience Whole Body Vibration (WBV), which occurs when the shaking motion of the vehicle is transferred to the body of the operator. Back pain is one common ailment linked to WBV. (Iowa Farmer Today) Published August 11, 2017

In Memoriam: Professor Emeritus Craig Zwerling

Craig Zwerling, professor emeritus in occupational and environmental health, died August 9, 2017, after a long illness. Funeral services will be held Sunday, August 13, 2017, at 2:00 p.m. at Agudas Achim Congregation, 401 East Oakdale Blvd. in Coralville.  Published August 10, 2017

IPRC receives $1.6 million in CDC grant funding

The University of Iowa Injury Prevention Center (UI IPRC) has received a two-year award of more than $1.6 million in grant money from the CDC to bolster its work. The UI IPRC conducts interdisciplinary injury research, provides training to future injury professionals, and translates its work into practice with the help of local, state, and national partners.  Published August 8, 2017

Field comments on EPA’s radon action level

About one out of every 15 homes in the country, or nearly 7 percent, has elevated levels of radon, according to the EPA. Though it's the standard used in most radon research, the EPA's 4 pCi/L action level is actually much higher than what's safe for humans to be around, said William Field, a professor at the University of Iowa College of Public Health and one of the country's top radon researchers. "If it was truly health-based, the action level would be 0.4," Field said. (PressConnects) Published August 8, 2017

Safety Watch: Simple mistake means shortcut to ER

Stephanie Leonard, an industrial hygienist at the UI, shares her "oh-no-it’s-happening-this-is-going-to-be-bad-what-a-stupid-mistake” story about a fall from a ladder that ended in a broken wrist. (Iowa Farmer Today) Published July 27, 2017

Thorne: Rural areas face environmental challenges

In an article about environmental challenges in rural areas associated with coal mining, fracking, and climate change, CPH Professor Peter Thorne says rural areas face infrastructure challenges around increased rainfall and flooding. “The ditches and small creeks [in these areas] were not set up to accommodate those levels of water flow,” he says. “Roads can flood; evacuations will be made more difficult; emergency responders might not be able to get through to people.” (Governing) Published July 25, 2017

Columbus Junction schools will seek more information on PCB study

Responding to a University of Iowa study that found PCBs in Columbus Junction schools, Superintendent Gary Benda said Friday that his district will seek more information before it takes action. Peter Thorne, CPH professor of occupational and environmental health, was involved with the study and said PCBs are likely present in other school districts as well. "The only reason that we found PCBs in these schools is because we studied them,” he said. “Probably every school in Iowa has PCBs to some extent. It’s a matter of the levels that are present — older schools have higher levels.” (Muscatine Journal) Published July 11, 2017

Field weighs in on radon and cancer rates

A recent article examined the lack of radon testing conducted on rental properties. A reader responded by pointing to a study that found an inverse relationship between radon and rates of lung cancer. CPH professor Bill Field replied that the study "has been widely discredited by the National Academy of Science, EPA, and others." (Ann Arbor Observer) Published July 6, 2017

Peek-Asa selected for Big Ten Academic Leadership Program

Corinne Peek-Asa, University of Iowa professor of occupational and environmental health and associate dean for research in the College of Public Health, has been named a Fellow in the 2017–18 Big Ten Academic Alliance Academic Leadership Program. Published June 29, 2017

Questions or comments? Contact Dave Asa. This page was last reviewed on May 29, 2014.