HHE Report, No. HETA-82-114-1097, Fire Department, Houston, Texas.
NIOSH 1982 Apr:14 pages
The prevalence and severity of symptoms and possible lasting adverse health effects to firefighters (SIC-9224) as a result of a chemical fire involving polyvinylchloride (9002862) (PVC) in Houston, Texas, were evaluated. The study was requested by the International Association of Fire Fighters and was performed on February 1 to 3, 1982. A self administered questionnaire was given to 75 percent of 125 firefighters to determine symptoms and exposure estimates. Medical information on two firefighters who were hospitalized was obtained. There were reported skin disorders in 52 percent and respiratory symptoms lasting 3 days after the fire in 44 percent of firefighters. Those who spent 4 or more hours at the fire had a 70 percent prevalence of skin disorders and 54 percent prevalence of multiple acute respiratory complaints. Those exposed for 1 to 3 hours had a 25 and 6 percent prevalence, respectively. Two weeks after the fire, skin symptoms had disappeared, but 28 percent still had respiratory symptoms or nausea. The author concludes that a large proportion of the firefighters suffered acute effects due to exposure at the chemical fire, but suggests the respiratory symptoms noted 2 weeks after the fire may be related to cumulative effects of long term exposure rather than to a result of this PVC fire.
NIOSH-Author; NIOSH-Health-Hazard-Evaluation; Hazards-Confirmed; Acute-exposure; Carcinogens; Irritant-gases; Long-term-exposure; Occupational-exposure; Firemen; Region-6; HETA-82-114-1097; NIOSH-Technical-Assistance-Report;
Hazard Evaluation and Technical Assistance; Field Studies
NTIS Accession No.
Hazard Evaluations and Technical Assistance Branch, NIOSH, Cincinnati, Ohio, 14 pages, 7 references