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Health hazard evaluation report: HETA-80-239-1170, Boeing Electronics, Irving, Texas.

Markel HL Jr.; Moody PL
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 80-239-1170, 1982 Aug; :1-10
In response to a request from an employee representative, an evaluation was made of possible hazardous conditions at Boeing Electronics (SIC-3728), Irving, Texas. This facility produced electronic circuitry for aircraft. Concern was expressed over exposure to methyl-ethyl-ketone (78933), xylene (1330207), and toluene-diisocyanate (584849) after an incident involving five workers in the encapsulation room. Personal breathing zone or area air samples indicated that exposures to these substances were either below acceptable limits or below the limits of detection. Apparently there had been exposure to these substances at levels sufficient enough to cause headaches, a feeling of intoxication, and chest pain in five workers on July 18, 1980. The exposed workers developed a productive cough which lasted up to several weeks. Two of the five workers had not returned to work by the time of the evaluation in October, 1980. The authors conclude that there was no evidence of a health hazard at the time of the evaluation; apparently, workers in the encapsulation room experienced acute exposure to unknown levels of these substances and developed a form of acute bronchitis as a result. The authors recommend that all operators be educated as to the proper operation of the encapsulating machines, and all employees should be alert for symptoms of solvent overexposure and exit any work area where such exposure is suspect. Respirators appropriate for organic vapors must be available, well fitted, and properly maintained. All ventilation system and engineering changes should be incorporated prior to the introduction of a new process in the production chain.
NIOSH-Author; NIOSH-Health-Hazard-Evaluation; NIOSH-Technical-Assistance-Report; HETA-80-239-1170; Region-6; Hazard-Unconfirmed; Organic-solvents; Isocyanates; Electronics-industry; Pulmonary-system-disorders; Author Keywords: Aircraft Parts and Auxiliary Equipment, Not elsewhere Classified; Methyl ethyl ketone; Xylene; Toluene diisocyanate
78-93-3; 1330-20-7; 584-84-9
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Field Studies; Hazard Evaluation and Technical Assistance
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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