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HHE determination report no. HHE-79-39-641, Novamont Corporation, Kenova, West Virginia.
Cincinnati, OH: U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, HHE 79-39-641, 1979 Dec; :1-25
Environmental sampling was conducted and medical questionnaires were distributed to workers at the Novamont Corporation (SIC-2821) in Kenova, West Virginia on February 7 to 9, and June 11 to 13, 1979 to determine if exposures to polypropylene (9003070) powder, methanol (67561), and heptane (142825) were related to chronic neurologic disease among 13 employees. The evaluation request came from an authorized employee representative. Heptane and methanol were undetected in liquid bulk samples. A portion of the polypropylene powder was of respirable size (less than 10 microns in size). Heptane and methanol in personal and area air samples were below OSHA standards of 500 and 200 parts per million for an 8 hour time weighted average, respectively. Predominant health complaints were of hypertension, and numbness and stiffness of the limbs. Neurologic symptoms varied among the workers. One man reported a 7 year history of blurred vision following methanol exposure. Deficiencies in noise control and respiratory protection were noted. The authors conclude that the neurologic symptoms were probably unrelated to toxic exposure, but the case of impaired vision was related to methanol exposure. Pigments used to color the product may have neurotoxic effects. The authors recommend control of solvent vapors, improved housekeeping, respiratory protection, and noise control; evaluation of color pigment exposures; and medical surveillance.
NIOSH-Author; HHE-79-39-641; NIOSH-Health-Hazard-Evaluation; Plastic-materials-and-synthetics; Hazard-Confirmed; Data; Chemical-factory-workers; Air-contaminants; Airborne-dusts; Neurological-effects; Region-3; Author Keywords: chronic neurologic disease; solvent; polymer powder; methanol; heptane
9003-07-0; 67-56-1; 142-82-5
Field Studies; Health Hazard Evaluation
NTIS Accession No.
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Page last reviewed: May 5, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division