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HHE determination report no. HHE-75-11-403, Port of Duluth-Superior Grain Elevators, Duluth, Minnesota and Superior, Wisconsin.

Authors
Flesch-JP; Thoburn-TW
Source
Cincinnati, OH: U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, HHE 75-11-403, 1977 Jun; :1-45
NIOSHTIC No.
00071958
Abstract
A health hazard evaluation investigation was conducted by NIOSH at the grain elevators (SIC-4221) in the Port of Duluth-Superior in 1975-76, following a request by an authorized workers' representative alleging illness and complaints from a large number of workers due to chemicals and high dust levels. Elevator breathing zone exposures to chemical fumigants were nearly nonexistent; only trace of carbon-tetrachloride (56235) were detected at five of the elevators surveyed. Some elevator workers were exposed to airborne total grain dust at levels exceeding the OSHA nuisance dust standards. Symptoms of eye irritation were reported by a few workers presumably due to excessive dust exposures during the survey. Extensive medical evaluation of the 307 exposed workers lead to the conclusion that the working environment in the grain elevators has caused acute respiratory, eye and nasal symptoms as determined by history from workers and personal observation. Long term effects were also noted by history and respiratory function tests. Smokers were more affected than nonsmokers, but nonsmokers also had a higher incidence of such problems than the general population. A high frequency of skin reactivity to intradermal injection of insect and flax antigen was found among workers; significant correlation with wheezing upon exposure to grain dust and respiratory function abnormalities was also found. Recommendation are made to provide for worker protection, surveillance, and health maintenance.
Keywords
NIOSH-Author; NIOSH-Health-Hazard-Evaluation; HHE-75-11-403; Hazard-Confirmed; Region-5; Air-quality-measurement; Chlorinated-methanes; Smoking; Allergic-reactions; Respiratory-system-disorders; Occupational-exposure; Grain-elevator-workers; Diagnostic-tests; Dust-control; Author Keywords: grain elevators; grain dust; nuisance dust; eye irritation; acute respiratory, eye, nasal symptoms; Duram wheat; barley; rye; pulmonary function testing
CAS No.
56-23-5
Publication Date
19770601
Document Type
Field Studies; Health Hazard Evaluation
Fiscal Year
1977
NTIS Accession No.
PB89-181473
NTIS Price
A04
Identifying No.
HHE-75-11-403
NIOSH Division
DSHEFS
SIC Code
4221
Source Name
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
State
MN; WI; OH
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