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Technical assistance report no. TA-80-33, Omaha Waste Pretreatment Plant, Omaha, Nebraska.
Cincinnati, OH: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, TA 80-33, 1980 Jun; :1-10
An environmental and medical survey was conducted on February 6 and April 3, 1980 at the Omaha Waste Pretreatment facility (SIC-9511) in Omaha, Nebraska. The management of the Public Works Department, City of Omaha, requested technical assistance from NIOSH to determine if any health hazards were present at the facility which employs 19 workers. Long term detector tubes were used for evaluation of personal and area exposure to hydrogen-sulfide (7783064) (H2S). Personal and breathing zone samples were collected on charcoal tubes and analyzed by mass spectrometry to identify the presence of organic air contaminants. Short term detector tubes were used to detect other potential contaminants such as oxides of nitrogen and sulfur-dioxide (7446095). Personal samples for H2S ranged from 0.5 to between 39.4 and 73.2 parts per million (ppm), with estimated 8 hour time weighted averages (TWA) ranging from 4.2ppm to between 8.9ppm and 15.0 ppm. The current OSHA standard is 20ppm for an 8 hour TWA with a 10 minute ceiling value of 50ppm. Trace amounts of other contaminants were all less than 5 percent of the environmental criteria for these compounds. Interviewed employees reported past and current health problems such as irritations to the eyes and respiratory system. The authors conclude that a health hazard due to H2S existed at the pretreatment facility and probably existed as a prolonged intermittent exposure over the past several years. Recommendations are provided for improvements in ventilation, housekeeping, personal hygiene, and medical surveillance.
NIOSH-Author; NIOSH-Technical-Assistance-Report; TA-80-33; Region-7; Hazard-Confirmed; Toxic-gases; Work-environment; Air-contaminants; Eye-irritants; Respiratory-irritants; Air-flow
Field Studies; Technical Assistance
NTIS Accession No.
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Page last reviewed: December 31, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division