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Heat stress survey of steam distribution system in the Washington, D.C. area.
Rockville, MD: U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, Public Health Service, Health Services and Mental Health Administration, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, Project No. 72-2, 1972 Jun; :1-27
A heat stress survey was made of the steam distribution system in the Washington, D.C. area. Existing environmental heat load and controls inside the steam tunnels were evaluated and medical and physiological examinations were made of tunnel workers. Using existing heat stress standards, it was determined that half the tunnel is unsafe at energy expenditures of 200 Kcal/hr or more and that three-fourths of the system is unsafe for energy expenditures of 400 Kcal/hr or more. Of 25 workers whose records were reviewed, three had histories of hypertension and two of respiratory problems. It is recommended that a course be instituted to educate tunnel workers of the hazards of heat stress. Suggestions are made for more efficient cooling and ventilating of the work areas. On particularly hot days, it is recommended that work schedules be regulated and cooled protective clothing be used. Acclimatization procedures for the workers should be established, and medical monitoring of all workers should be improved. Physiological data indicated that in the three heat stress job categories studied, recommended permissible heat stress levels in a working day were exceeded in over 50% of the places sampled.
Hazards; Prevention; Temperature; Exposure; Ergonomics
NTIS Accession No.
Project No. 72-2
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division