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Ethylene dichloride

May 1994
Immediately Dangerous to Life or Health Concentrations (IDLH)

CAS number: 107–06–2

NIOSH REL: 1 ppm (4 mg/m3) TWA, 2 ppm (8 mg/m3) STEL; NIOSH considers ethylene dichloride to be a potential occupational carcinogen as defined by the OSHA carcinogen policy [29 CFR 1990].

Current OSHA PEL: 50 ppm TWA, 100 ppm CEILING,

200 ppm 5-minute MAXIMUM PEAK in any 3 hours

1989 OSHA PEL: 1 ppm (4 mg/m3) TWA, 2 ppm (8 mg/m3) STEL

1993-1994 ACGIH TLV: 10 ppm (40 mg/m3) TWA

Description of Substance: Colorless liquid with a pleasant, chloroform-like odor.

LEL:. . 6.2% (10% LEL, 6,200 ppm)

Original (SCP) IDLH: 1,000 ppm

Basis for original (SCP) IDLH: The chosen IDLH is based on the maximum time-concentration in air of 1,000 ppm which was survived by female rats for 1.5 hours [Spencer et al. 1951 cited by Patty 1963]. The chosen IDLH is further supported by the rat 4-hour LCLO of 1,000 ppm [Carpenter et al. 1949 cited by NIOSH 1976].

Short-term exposure guidelines: None developed


Lethal concentration data:

Species Reference LC50(ppm) LCLo(ppm) Time Adjusted 0.5-hrLC (CF) Derivedvalue


G. pig



Arch Exp Pathol Pharmacol 1929Carpenter et al. 1949

Heppel et al. 1945

Heppel et al. 1945

Marhold 1986

Spencer et al. 1951











2 hr4 hr

7 hr

7 hr

7 hr

7 hr

1,947 ppm (1.6)2,000 ppm (2.0)

7,200 ppm (2.4)

3,600 ppm (2.4)

7,200 ppm (2.4)

2,400 ppm (2.4)

195 ppm200 ppm

720 ppm

360 ppm

720 ppm

240 ppm


Other animal data: It has been reported that female rats survived a 1.5-hour exposure to 1,000 ppm [Spencer et al. 1951].

Human data: In one study, 1 of 6 workers reported symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, and dizziness from exposures between 10 and 37 ppm [Brzozowski et al. 1954].

Revised IDLH: 50 ppmBasis for revised IDLH: The revised IDLH for ethylene dichloride is 50 ppm based on acute inhalation toxicity data in workers [Brzozowski et al. 1954]. [Note: NIOSH recommends as part of its carcinogen policy that the “most protective” respirators be worn for ethylene dichloride at concentrations above 1 ppm.]



1. Arch Exp Pathol Pharmakol [1929]; 141:19.

2. Brzozowski J, Czajka J, Dutkiewicz T, et al. [1954]. Work hygiene and the health condition of workers occupied in combating the letinotarsa decemlineata with HCH and dichloroethane. Med Pr 5:89-98 (in Polish). [From ACGIH [1991]. Ethylene dichloride. In: Documentation of the threshold limit values and biological exposure indices. 6th ed. Cincinnati, OH: American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists, pp. 609-611.]

3. Carpenter CP, Smyth HF Jr, Pozzani UC [1949]. The assay of acute vapor toxicity, and the grading and interpretation of results on 96 chemical compounds. J Ind Hyg Toxicol 31(6):343-346.

4. Heppel LA, Neal PA, Perrin TL, Endicott KM, Porterfield VT [1945]. The toxicity of 1,2-dichloroethane (ethylene dichloride). III. Its acute toxicity and the effect of protective agents. J Pharmacol Exp Ther 84(1):53-63.

5. Marhold J [1986]. Prehled Prumyslove Toxikologie, Organicke Latky. Prague, Czechoslovakia: Avicenum, p. 93 (in Czechoslovakian).

6. NIOSH [1976]. KI05250. Ethane, 1,2-dichloro-. In: Registry of toxic effects of chemical substances, 1976 ed. Cincinnati, OH: U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, Public Health Service, Center for Disease Control, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, DHEW (NIOSH) Publication No. 76-191, p. 489.

7. Patty FA, ed. [1963]. Industrial hygiene and toxicology. 2nd rev. ed. Vol. II. Toxicology. New York, NY: Interscience Publishers, Inc., p. 1281.

8. Spencer HC, Rowe VK, Adams EM, McCollister DD, Irish DD [1951]. Vapor toxicity of ethylene dichloride determined by experiments on laboratory animals. AMA Arch Ind Hyg Occup Med 4:482-493.