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CCA-Treated Wood Claims Puppy Casualty

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The same arsenic-based wood preservative used on children's playground equipment has been blamed for the unexpected death of a puppy. Newfoundland doctor Wayne Chaulk was having a new deck installed when his granddaughter's pet chewed on a piece of the chemical-treated wood.

The same arsenic-based wood preservative used on children's playground equipment has been blamed for the unexpected death of a puppy. Newfoundland doctor Wayne Chaulk was having a new deck installed when his granddaughter's pet chewed on a piece of the chemical-treated wood. The young dog died just minutes afterward (The Telegram July 21, 2001).

Chromated copper arsenate (CCA) is one of three extremely toxic wood preservatives currently being reevaluated by both Health Canada and the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to determine whether they should be taken off the market. (Pentachlorophenol and creosote are the other two preservatives.) The EPA classifies arsenic and chromium VI, two components of CCA, as "known human carcinogens." A single 12-foot 2x6 board contains about 27 grams of arsenic, which is enough to kill 250 adult humans, according to Environment Canada.

A US environmental group, Beyond Pesticides, has published two reports detailing the health risks associated with exposure to CCA, pentachlorophenol and creosote at <beyondpesticides.org >.

MH

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