Officials and doctors largely based their assumptions on limited chlorine studies, mostly from occupational exposures, such as in pulp mills. These studies were limited to healthy adults. Mass chlorine exposures to a general population were rare, and few health providers had much experience with treating significant chlorine exposures. Still, the medical literature at the time offered many caveats, warning that studies were scarce and limited, and several studies in the decade before Alberton had concluded that chronic respiratory illness could result, even in healthy adults with a moderate exposure. Source
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