Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Almost An Epidemic...!

Sometimes the consequences of a stupid act are felt that could be deadly.

Here's a case where a ship gets too close to an island and nearly causes a world-wide epidemic, thanks to some cold war bio-weapon research.

Scientist Takes Plankton Samples And Nearly Causes Pandemic

During the Cold War, the Soviets had an active bioweapons program and conducted various tests of biological agents in natural environments. On an island in the Aral Sea in 1971, one such test nearly caused an outbreak of a virulent and hemorrhagic form of smallpox that could have spread across the world.

A Soviet scientific research ship had unknowingly sailed close to the island to take plankton samples. A scientist aboard the ship became infected. After the ship returned to the port of Aralsk, she infected others.

When the Soviets realized what was happening, they initiated a massive vaccination program and shut down transport from Aralsk to other parts of the Soviet Union. This prevented a potentially global outbreak of hemorrhagic smallpox.

Three people died. Even those who had been vaccinated against smallpox got mild to severe cases of the disease, which was an indication of the virulence of this particular strain.

I wonder how many more cases of this type of research are going on. Could they cause another spread of some deadly disease? More than we really want to know, I'll bet!

Coffee out on the patio. They say rain, but I say...so what?


linda m said...

I know in my heart that there are all kinds of deadly experiments going on that we aren't being told about. scares the crap out of me. Coffee on the patio sounds good. Since it's raining here it won't make any difference if I get wet on your patio. :)

HermitJim said...

Hey Linda...
I think it should scare us. Just think...one accident and the apocalypse movies would all be correct! Maybe it's best we don't know!
Thanks for coming over this morning!

Sixbears said...

I'm sure it's only gotten worse as biotech had advanced. It's the sort thing that can keep a person awake at night.

It's been cold, snow yesterday, but supposed to hit the 60s today. Good day for some home roasted Mexican coffee.

HermitJim said...

Hey Sixbears...
I'm afraid you are right about that! Getting worse than ever before!
I hear ya on the fresh roasted coffee!
Thanks for stopping by today!

JO said...

This stuff is scarey and I have no doubt it is going on in lots of country including our own.

Can always make a made dash for the kitchen if it starts to rain.

Dizzy-Dick said...

Man is mankind's worst enemy.

HermitJim said...

Hey Jo...
You are so right. Scary is a good way to describe it.
Thanks for dropping by today, sweetie!

Hey Dizzy...
Ain't it the truth! BTW, those are some nice looking eggs at your house! Wish I had some!
Thanks for coming over today!