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Health hazard evaluation report: HHE-80-036-922, Lithium Corporation of America, Bessemer City, North Carolina.

Authors
Salisbury-SA; Keenlyside-RA
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 80-036-922, 1981 Jul; :1-20
NIOSHTIC No.
00118873
Abstract
Worker exposures to lithium (7439932) compounds, free silica (7631869), and n-hexane were surveyed on February 4 to 7 and August 25 to 27, 1980 at the Lithium Corporation of America (SIC-2819) in Bessemer City, North Carolina. The evaluation was requested by the Oil, Chemical and Atomic Workers Union, Local 3-802, on behalf on an unspecified number of workers. Personal and area air samples were collected, and workers completed health questionnaires and provided blood samples for lithium analysis. Two personal samples from the lithium grinding room and one from the packing room exceed the OSHA 15 milligram per cubic meter (mg/cu m) standard for total dust. Lithium exposure was greatest in the lithium-carbonate (554132) grinding room. Lithium-hydroxide (1310652) exposures ranged up to 171mg/cu m. All n-hexane and silica concentrations were below the respective OSHA standards of 500 parts per million and 10mg/cu m divided by the percentage of quartz plus 2. All but two blood samples contained no detectable lithium; the two samples contained lithium concentrations below the therapeutic effect threshold of 2.8 to 8.3 milligrams per liter. Workers exposed to lithium-hydroxide and lithium-carbonate reported a significant prevalence of upper respiratory tract and skin irritations. The authors conclude that workers are exposed to excessive amounts of lithium-carbonate dusts as nuisance dust. Several engineering and personal protective control measures are recommended.
Keywords
NIOSH-Author; HHE-80-036-922; NIOSH-Health-Hazard-Evaluation; Hazards-Confirmed; Region-4; Mineral-dusts; Workplace-studies; Air-sampling; Air-quality-measurement; Air-quality-control; Health-surveys; Pulmonary-system; Clinical-symptoms; Author Keywords: lithium; silica; alkaline dusts; hexane; respiratory irritation; blood lithium levels
CAS No.
7439-93-2; 7631-86-9; 554-13-2; 1310-65-2
Publication Date
19810701
Document Type
Field Studies; Health Hazard Evaluation
Fiscal Year
1981
NTIS Accession No.
PB83-102905
NTIS Price
A03
Identifying No.
HHE-80-036-922
NIOSH Division
DSHEFS
SIC Code
2819
Source Name
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
State
NC; OH
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