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HETA Report No. MTA-80-109-110, Patriot Coal Company Laboratory, Kingwood, West Virginia.

Authors
Jankovic-J
Source
NIOSH 1980 Jun; :1-14
Link
NIOSHTIC No.
00232432
Abstract
An industrial hygiene survey was conducted at Patriot Coal Company Laboratory, Kingwood, West Virginia. The evaluation was requested by the District 3 Director for the Mine Safety and Health Administration to determine if solvent vapors emitted from the float and sink (FAS) apparatus during routine FAS testing of coal presented a health hazard. Ambient air and breathing zone samples from two laboratory technicians operating the FAS apparatus were collected and analyzed for perchloroethylene (127184), ethylene- dibromide (106934), and varsol (64475850) by infrared analyzers. The work practices of the two technicians were observed. Perchloroethylene concentrations measured 10 feet from the FAS apparatus ranged from 110 to 194 parts per million (ppm). Perchloroethylene concentrations in the breathing zone samples from the two technicians averaged 149 and 101ppm. All perchloroethylene exposures exceeded the NIOSH recommended limit of 100ppm. The excess perchloroethylene exposures were attributed to improper work practices such as having to insert one's head inside the hood over the FAS apparatus during testing and placing coal samples wet with perchloroethylene on the floor until they could be placed in the oven for drying. The hood over the apparatus had inadequate face velocity to control perchloroethylene exposures. No ethylene- dibromide or varsol vapors were detected. The author concludes that employees in the coal testing laboratory were overexposed to perchloroethylene as a result of improper work practices and inadequate ventilation. Recommendations include conducting FAS testing under a properly designed, operating local exhaust ventilation system, substituting another chemical for perchloroethylene if possible, requiring respirators and other protective equipment to be worn when handling perchloroethylene, and giving all workers at the facility preplacement and annual medical examinations.
Keywords
NIOSH-Author; NIOSH-Technical-Assistance-Report; Region-3; MTA-80-109-110; Hazard-Confirmed; Laboratory-workers; Organic-solvents; Occupational-exposure; Chlorinated-ethylenes; Work-practices; Industrial-hygiene; Exhaust-ventilation
CAS No.
127-18-4; 106-93-4; 64475-85-0
Publication Date
19800601
Document Type
Hazard Evaluation and Technical Assistance; Field Studies
Fiscal Year
1980
NTIS Accession No.
PB82-214792
NTIS Price
A03
Identifying No.
MTA-80-109-110
NIOSH Division
DRDS
Source Name
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
State
WV
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