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Health hazard evaluation report: HETA-82-341-1682, Great Lakes Carbon, Wilmington, California.

Lee SA; Lipscomb JA; Neumeister CE
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 82-341-1682, 1986 Apr; :1-44
An environmental survey was conducted in February, 1984, at the Great Lakes Carbon Corporation (SIC-2999), Wilmington, California. Local 1-128 of the Oil, Chemical, and Atomic Workers International Union had requested an evaluation of environmental conditions and possible health effects among workers exposed to coke dust. Personal breathing zone (PBZ) concentrations of total airborne dust ranged from 0.1 to 12 milligrams/cubic meter (mg/m3) with a median of 1.6 mg/m3; mass median particle diameter was about 8 micrometers. Very high PBZ concentrations of coke dust occurred during a semimonthly cleanup of underground coke pits; levels ranged from 98 to 190mg/m3 with a mean of 140mg/m3. Oil mists were not detected. Exposures to polynuclear aromatic compounds were below the analytical limit of detection among workers for routine jobs. Abnormal pulmonary function tests were found in 12 percent of those tested. Questionnaires were completed by 18 of 25 salaried employees, and 38 of 50 hourly employees. Five cases of chronic bronchitis and seven of chronic cough, 10 and 13 percent respectively, were identified among those interviewed. These findings were more related to cigarette smoking than employment category. Skin problems were reported in 38 percent, due to dusts, oils, heat, sun, or a combination of these. The authors conclude that there were potentially hazardous exposures to high dust levels during semimonthly coke pit cleaning jobs.
NIOSH-Author; NIOSH-Health-Hazard-Evaluation; NIOSH-Technical-Assistance-Report; Hazard-Confirmed; Coke-manufacturing; Coke-oven-workers; Pulmonary-system-disorders; Pneumoconiosis; Lung-disorders; Skin-irritants; Skin-disorders; Region-9; HETA-82-341-1682; Author Keywords: Products of Petroleum and Coal; Calcined Petroleum Coke; Calcine; Coke Dust; Polynuclear Aromatic Compounds; PNAs; Pulmonary Function; Pneumoconiosis; Chronic Bronchitis; Simulated Lung Fluid
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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