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Emerging Technologies and the Safety and Health Of Working People: Knowledge Gaps and Research Directions


August 2006
DHHS (NIOSH) Publication Number 2006-136
Cover of NIOSH document number 2006-136

Since its inception, NIOSH has been committed to understanding and preventing hazards arising from emerging technologies. In the 1970s, NIOSH investigated issues related to emerging technologies including X-ray use at airports, new glues used in construction, new plasticizers and chemical additives used in manufacturing, and radiation and ergonomic issues related to the use of video display terminals in offices. In the 1980s, NIOSH investigated the injury hazards of robots, the biohazards related to the care of patients with emerging infectious diseases, increased dust exposure related to the longwall mining technology, and the indoor air contamination related to tight building technology. In the 1990s, NIOSH launched studies of the potential hazards with electromagnetic radiation and falls from elevations relative to erecting and maintaining communication towers, of new fiber manufacturing technology, and the consequences of potential skin and respiratory exposures during the manufacture of new drugs.

2006-136.pdf [PDF – 1.09 MB]