Project #1813

Protecting Wastewater Treatment Plant Operators from Emerging Pathogens

Principal Investigator
MacDonald Gibson
Research Manager
Ms. Lola Olabode
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Microbes & Pathogens
Risk Assessment


The 2014 Ebola epidemic was distressing to sewer workers and others that handle hazardous materials from hospitals. It was especially concerning because not much information is known about the transmission of Ebola in waste. The report reviews existing protocols for managing liquid waste from Ebola patients prior to flushing into the sanitary sewer system, develops a consensus protocol for handling liquid wastes from hospital patients infected with emerging pathogens, develops a cutting-edge decision support tool to assist wastewater utilities, health officials, and hospitals better understand and minimize risks, and reveals the need for better information on how to safeguard the workforce from infectious diseases. Published by WE&RF. 70 pages. Online PDF. (2016)

Related online decision support tools can also be accessed here (…)

Originally funded as WERF project WERF3C15.