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Health hazard evaluation report: HHE-80-240-855, New York, University, New York, New York.
Baker D; Fannick N
Cincinnati, OH: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, HHE 80-240-855, 1981 Apr; :1-16
Environmental air samples were analyzed for formaldehyde (50000), ethyl-acrylate (140885), and organic solvents to investigate complaints of headache, eye irritation, fatigue and nausea among employees at New York University (SIC-8221) in New York, New York. The evaluation was requested by the management on behalf of approximately 40 employees. Concentrations ethyl-acrylate, toluene (108883), formaldehyde, hexane (110543), and methylchloroform (71556) were below respective OSHA standards of 100, 750, 4.5, 1800, and 1900 milligrams per cubic meter. The responses to medical questionnaires administered to 53 employees revealed a high prevalence of mucosal membrane irritation and headache, with fatigue or nausea occuring concurrently during construction and varnishing of office interiors. The authors conclude that while no definite toxic exposures could be ascertained because sampling took place 2 months after the symptoms were initially reported, the symptoms were consistent with exposures to formaldehyde or volatile organics. They recommend increasing the ventilation rate, installing of a separate exhaust system, and raising the height of the exhaust stack.
NIOSH-Author; HHE-80-240-855; NIOSH-Health-Hazard-Evaluation; Hazards-Unconfirmed; Region-2; Air-sampling; Health-surveys; Aldehydes; Organic-compounds; Industrial-hygiene; Author Keywords: Colleges, Universities, and Professional Schools; Office Building; Ventilation; Formaldehyde; Organic Vapors; Ethyl Acrylate; Fatigue; Headache; Nausea; Eye Irritation
50-00-0; 140-88-5; 108-88-3; 110-54-3; 71-55-6
Field Studies; Health Hazard Evaluation
NTIS Accession No.
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