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Health hazard evaluation report: HETA-82-264-1232, Olympic Medal Laboratories, Bremerton, Washington.
Cincinnati, OH: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, HETA 82-264-1232, 1982 Nov; :1-8
Worker exposures to formaldehyde (50000) and xylene (1330207) were investigated on July 13 and 21, 1982 at the histology lab of Olympic Medical Laboratories (SIC-8071) in Bremerton, Washington. The evaluation was requested by an unspecified individual from the company on behalf of three full time lab technicians and three part time pathologists. Breathing zone samples were analyzed, and the employees were interviewed regarding medical complaints. Xylene exposures ranged from 3 to 14 parts per million (ppm) well below the NIOSH time weighted average standard of 100ppm. Formaldehyde exposures ranged from 0.08 to 2.58ppm; NIOSH recommends that exposures be kept to the lowest feasible limit. Two workers reported eye and nose irritation when working with formaldehyde treated specimens. The author concludes that a formaldehyde exposure hazard exists at the lab. He recommends improved air flow, work practices and personal hygiene habits. Protective respirators should also be used.
NIOSH-Author; NIOSH-Health-Hazard-Evaluation; Hazards-Confirmed; Laboratory-workers; Respiratory-protective-equipment; Occupational-exposure; Air-flow; HETA-82-264-1232; NIOSH-Technical-Assistance-Report; Region-10; Author Keywords: Medical Laboratories; Formaldehyde; Xylene; Ventilation
Field Studies; Hazard Evaluation and Technical Assistance
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