Mortality of a Cohort of U.S. Workers Employed in the Crushed Stone Industry, 1940-1980.
Costello-J; Castellan-RM; Swecker-GS; Kullman-GK
NIOSH 1992 Jul:36 pages
An evaluation was undertaken of the mortality of 3246 males employed 1 or more years in 20 crushed stone operations in the US from 1940 through 1980. Associations were sought between employment in these operations and mortality from pneumoconiosis and other nonmalignant respiratory diseases, lung cancer and mesothelioma. Asbestos (1332214) fibers were identified in one operation at a Maryland traprock facility. Average asbestos fiber exposures at the time of the survey were less than 0.1 fiber/cubic centimeter. Nonasbestos mineral fibers were found in four other locations. Crystalline silica (14808607) in the form of alpha quartz was a component of respirable dust at nearly all of the surveyed operations, comprising 37%, 11%, and 15% by weight of the personal respirable dust samples collected at granite, limestone, and traprock operations, respectively. Pneumoconiosis was a contributing factor in four deaths. Mortality attributed to nonmalignant diseases was significantly increased, particularly chronic obstructive lung diseases. Mortality trends for lung cancer were consistent with an occupational etiology related to employment in the studied crushed stone operations, as well as by rock type. A considerable increase in the rate of lung cancer was noted among granite workers with at least 20 years latency. Three workers had specific mention of mesothelioma on their death certificates and each had been employed by the same limestone operation.
NIOSH-Author; Epidemiology; Mortality-surveys; Mineral-dusts; Dust-exposure; Silica-dusts; Lung-cancer; Occupational-exposure; Respiratory-system-disorders; Risk-factors; Cancer-rates; Mineral-processing;
NTIS Accession No.
Asthma and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease; Disease and Injury; Respiratory-system-disorders;
Division of Respiratory Disease Studies, NIOSH, Cincinnati, Ohio, 36 pages, 34 references