HHE Determination Report No. HHE-80-27-704, Airco Welding Products, Chester, West Virginia.
An environmental and medical survey was conducted on November 6, 1979 at the Airco Welding Products (SIC-3480) in Chester, West Virginia. An authorized representative of the employees requested the evaluation to investigate worker exposure to air contaminants while manufacturing welding wire. Environmental samples were taken during normal operating conditions for methylene-chloride (75092), carbon-monoxide (630080), iron-oxide (1309371), copper (7440508), nickel (7440020), chromium (7440473), manganese (7439965), zirconium (7440677), molybdenum (7439987), silica (7631869), fluorides, hydrochloric-acid (7647010), and sulfuric-acid (7664939). Methylene- chloride concentrations ranged from 33 to 630 parts per million (ppm), with two samples exceeding the OSHA standard of 500ppm. Iron- oxide contractions were 7.4, 6.7, and 1.4 milligrams per cubic meter (mg/m3) which were below the OSHA standard of 10mg/m3. Airborne measurements for manganese, fluorides, copper, hydrochloric-acid and sulfuric-acid were all below applicable standards. Personal breathing zone samples taken for free crystalline silica, chromium, nickel, molybdenum, and zirconium were below the limits of detection. Interviews with 11 day shift employees revealed complaints associated with methylene-chloride exposure. The authors conclude that a health hazard exists from exposures to methylene- chloride, carbon-monoxide, and iron-oxide. They recommend implementation of improved work practices, engineering controls, and the use of personal protective equipment.
Division of Surveillance, Hazard Evaluations and Field Studies, NIOSH, Cincinnati, Ohio, Report No. HHE-80-27-704, 11 pages