Characterization of worker exposures to methylene chloride resulting from application of aerosol glue in the asbestos abatement industry.
Appl Ind Hyg 1988 Sep; 3(9):245-250
Worker exposures to methylene-chloride (75092) during asbestos removal projects were monitored as this chemical is contained in the adhesives used in constructing the containment structures to be used during the removal process. Personal air samples were collected during a removal operation using both organic vapor monitors and standard charcoal tubes, with gas chromatography as the analytical method. The exposure periods ranged from 4 to 6 hours giving a personal time weighted average (TWA) of 0.09 to 270 parts per million (ppm), corresponding to an 8 hour TWA range of 0.06 to 140ppm. During short term (15 minute) exposures the concentrations ranged from nondetectable to 1294ppm. The concentration depended greatly on the ventilation of the room and the amount of adhesive applied. The authors conclude that the use of these adhesives in a confined area can result in high concentrations of methylene chloride in the air. The authors recommend that high efficiency particulate air filter equipped exhaust systems used during asbestos removal operations be employed when these adhesives are being used prior to asbestos removal. Appropriate respirators should be used by workers to further reduce exposure levels. Efforts should be made to find a substitute for methylene-chloride in the aerosol adhesives.
NIOSH-Author; Organic-solvents; Aerosols; Air-quality-measurement; Asbestos-workers; Air-contamination; Chlorinated-hydrocarbons; Workplace-studies
Applied Industrial Hygiene
University of Utah, Rocky Mountain Center for Occupational and Environmental Health