A walk-through survey of the Ethyl Corporation, Pasadena, Texas, was conducted on May 9, 1974 to observe the operation of a vinyl- chloride (75014) monomer plant (SIC-2869) and to obtain preliminary information on vinyl-chloride exposure levels. The plant, medical programs, industrial hygiene, and safety programs are described. At this facility, vinyl-chloride is produced by the ethylene-dichloride (107062) cracking process. The major potential health hazard observed was respiratory exposure to gaseous vinyl-chloride. The major sources of vinyl-chloride exposure to workers occurs at the following operations: tank car loading and unloading, quality control sampling of process, and fugitive leaks from such equipment as pumps, valves, flanges, and gaskets. Due to the closed system and outdoors operation, worker exposure was quite low, most of the time. During operations where exposure potential cannot be eliminated, workers should continue to use air supplied respiratory protection.
Environmental Investigations Branch, Division of Field Studies and Clinical Investigations, NIOSH, Cincinnati, Ohio, 22 pages, 5 references