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May 1994
Immediately Dangerous to Life or Health Concentrations (IDLH)

Phenol

CAS number: 108–95–2

NIOSH REL: 5 ppm (19 mg/m3) TWA,

15.6 ppm (60 mg/m3) 15-minute CEILING [skin]

Current OSHA PEL: 5 ppm (19 mg/m3) TWA [skin]

1989 OSHA PEL: Same as current PEL

1993-1994 ACGIH TLV: 5 ppm (19 mg/m3) TWA [skin]

Description of substance: Colorless to light-pink, crystalline solid with a sweet, acrid odor.

LEL :. . 1.8% (10% LEL, 1,800 ppm)

Original (SCP) IDLH: 250 ppm

Basis for original (SCP) IDLH: The chosen IDLH is based on an analogy with cresol which has an IDLH of 250 ppm.

Existing short-term exposure guidelines: 1991 American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA) Emergency Response Planning Guidelines (ERPGs):

ERPG-1: 10 ppm (60-minute)

ERPG-2: 50 ppm (60-minute)

ERPG-3: 200 ppm (60-minute)

ACUTE TOXICITY DATA:

Lethal concentration data:

 

SpeciesReferenceLC50 (ppm)LCLo (ppm)TimeAdjusted 0.5-hr

LC (CF)

Derived value
Mammal

Rat

Mouse

Gig Tr Prof Zabol 1955

Nagoznyi 1976

Nagoznyi 1976

19

81

69

-----

-----

-----

?

?

?

?

?

?

?

?

?

Lethal dose data:

 

SpeciesReferenceRouteLD50 (mg/kg)LDLo (mg/kg)Adjusted LDDerived value
Rat

Rabbit

Dog

Cat

Mouse

Brown and Lamson 1935

Deichmann & Witherup 1944

Flury and Zernik 1935

Flury and Zernik 1935

Korolev et al. 1973

oral

oral

oral

oral

oral

317

-----

-----

-----

270

-----

420

500

80

-----

568 ppm

752 ppm

895 ppm

143 ppm

483 ppm

57 ppm

75 ppm

90 ppm

14 ppm

48 ppm

Other animal data: RD50 (mouse), 166 ppm [DeCeaurriz et al. 1981]. In rats, an exposure of 312 ppm for 1 hour only resulted in lacrimation and eye and nasal irritation; a slight loss of coordination was reported within 4 hours of exposure to 230 ppm [Flickinger 1976].

Human data: It has been stated that the toxicity of phenol is closely related to that of cresol [ACGIH 1991]. It has been reported that 14 to 140 mg/kg is the lethal oral dose [Deichmann and Gerarde 1969; Lefaux 1978]. [Note: An oral dose of 14 to 140 mg/kg is equivalent to a 70-kg worker being exposed to 167 to 1,670 ppm for 30 minutes, assuming a breathing rate of 50 liters per minute and 100% absorption.]

 

Revised IDLH: 250 ppm [Unchanged]

Basis for revised IDLH: Based on acute inhalation toxicity data in animals [Flickinger 1976] and an analogy to cresol [ACGIH 1991] which has a revised IDLH of 250 ppm, the original IDLH for phenol of 250 ppm is not being revised at this time.

REFERENCES:

1. ACGIH [1991]. Cresol, all isomers. In: Documentation of the threshold limit values and biological exposure indices. 6th ed. Cincinnati, OH: American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists, pp. 340-341.

2. Brown HW, Lamson PD [1935]. Oral toxicity of ortho-n-alkylphenols to white rats. Proc Soc Exp Biol Med 32:592-594.

3. DeCeaurriz JC, Micillino JC, Bonnet P, Guenier JP [1981]. Sensory irritation caused by various industrial airborne chemicals. Toxicol Lett 9(2):137-143.

4. Deichmann WB, Gerarde HW [1969]. Phenol (carbolic acid). In: Toxicology of drugs and chemicals. New York, NY: Academic Press, Inc., pp. 463-464.

5. Deichmann WB, Witherup S [1944]. Phenol studies. VI. The acute and comparative toxicity of phenol and o-, m- and p-cresols for experimental animals. J Pharmacol Exp Ther 80:233-240.

6. Flickinger CW [1976]. The benzenediols: catechol, resorcinol and hydroquinone: a review of the industrial toxicology and current industrial exposure limits. Am Ind Hyg Assoc J 37:596-606.

7. Flury F, Zernik F [1935]. Zusammenstellung der toxischen und letalen dosen für die gebräuchlichsten gifte und versuchstiere. Abder Hand Biol Arbeitsmethod 4:1319 (in German).

8. Gig Tr Prof Zabol [1955]. On the toxicity and maximum permissible concentration of a complex set of the neoleucorite (phenoformaldhyde) resin volatile products; 19(8):37-40 (in Russian).

9. Korolev AA, Abirdir AA, et al. [1973]. Hygienic and toxicologic features of products of phenol destruction in ozone treatment of water. Gig Sanit 38(8):6-10 (in Russian).

10. Lefaux R [1978]. Practical toxicology of plastics. Cleveland, OH: Chemical Rubber Co., p. 329.

11. Nagoznyi PA [1976]. About the elimination of the problem of combined effect of several toxic materials. Gig Sanit 41(6):103-105 (in Russian).

 
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