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May 16, 1925


Author Affiliations

BOSTON; Director, Workers' Health Bureau NEW YORK

JAMA. 1925;84(20):1481-1486. doi:10.1001/jama.1925.02660460017008

A new problem of public health and of industrial hygiene has suddenly arisen in this country as a result of the addition of tetra-ethyl lead to motor car gasoline. This procedure was adopted about two years ago, but it did not come to the knowledge of the general public until last fall, when a number of men were poisoned in a New Jersey plant and five died. The distressing details of these cases of insanity and death and the unknown nature of the new poison aroused much excitement and alarm, and induced the public health officials of New York City and of the states of New York and New Jersey to forbid the use of "ethyl gasoline" on the ground of danger to the public from poison contained in exhaust gases of motor engines burning such gasoline.1 This prohibition has recently been rescinded in the two states, but is