HHE report no. HETA-97-0049-2650, Albert Einstein Medical Center, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Cincinnati, OH: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, HETA 97-0049-2650, 1997 Sep; :1-13
In response to a request from a group of pathology laboratory employees at the Albert Einstein Medical Center (SIC-8071), Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, an investigation was begun into possible hazardous working conditions in the Pathology Laboratory. Concern was expressed regarding symptoms of fatigue, headache, dizziness, skin rash and respiratory and eye irritation felt by the workers to be caused by exposure to laboratory chemicals and diesel exhaust emissions from the ambulance bay. The laboratory staff includes approximately 80 workers generally working 8 hour shifts. Area air sampling results for individual hydrocarbons were well below their respective exposure limits. Carbon-monoxide (630080) concentrations peaked at 6 parts per million, and carbon-dioxide (124389) concentrations ranged up to 500 parts per million. Respirable particulate concentrations ranged up to 0.04mg/m3 which was well below the EPA ambient air quality standard of 0.150mg/m3. Temperature and relative humidity levels were within acceptable ranges. There were, however, some ventilation deficiencies noted along with fire prevention and general laboratory safety concerns which were observed. The authors recommend that improvements be made in laboratory safety, and that worker exposures to formaldehyde (50000) and potentially other solvents emanating from laboratory analytical instruments be evaluated.
NIOSH-Author; NIOSH-Health-Hazard-Evaluation; NIOSH-Technical-Assistance-Report; HETA-97-0049-2650; Hazard-Unconfirmed; Region-3; Solvent-vapors; Airborne-particles; Laboratory-workers; Occupational-exposure; Organic-solvents; Diesel-emissions;
Author Keywords: Medical Laboratories; indoor environmental quality; IEQ; eye irritation; respiratory irritation; HVAC; chemical fume hoods; hydrocarbons; ethylene oxide; diesel exhaust
630-08-0; 124-38-9; 50-00-0
Field Studies; Hazard Evaluation and Technical Assistance
NTIS Accession No.
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health