CAMEO – updated online database of hazardous materials

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Agency (NOAA) has announced that a newer version of the Computer Aided Management of Emergency Operations (CAMEO) Program is now online. CAMEO contains a chemical database of over 6,000 hazardous chemicals, 80,000 synonyms, and product trade names that allows users to find chemicals instantly. Products are linked to chemical-specific information on fire and explosive hazards, health hazards, fire-fighting techniques, clean-up procedures, and protective clothing. CAMEO also contains basic information on facilities that store chemicals, on the inventory of chemicals at the facility and emergency planning resources. CAMEO connects the planner or emergency responder with critical information to identify unknown substances during an incident.

 

CAMEO was initially developed because NOAA recognised the need to assist first responders with easily accessible and accurate response information. Since 1988, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and NOAA have collaborated to augment CAMEO to assist both emergency responders and planners. CAMEO has been enhanced to provide emergency planners with a tool to enter local information and develop incident scenarios to better prepare for chemical emergencies. The Bureau of Census and the U.S. Coast Guard have worked with EPA and NOAA to continue to enhance the system.

 

The program is used by State Emergency Response Commissions (SERCs), and Local Emergency Planning Committees (LEPCs). CAMEO will be one of the tools that the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) will consider when developing the Hazardous Substance Response Plans under OPA '90. The publication of a Supplemental Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (SNPRM) will eventually be published by the USCG following the full implementation of the MARPOL Annex II Revisions.

 

The website provides access to the same CAMEO database of over 6,000 hazardous materials but includes a revised search engine that is much faster and more straightforward. The CAMEO Chemicals datasheets have also been reformatted into an easier-to-read layout. One additional feature is the ability to mix chemicals and read reactivity hazard predictions. The Program can now be found online at http://cameochemicals.noaa.gov/

 

Contact: Margaret Doyle