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Health hazard evaluation report: HETA-88-274-1924, Office of Employment Security, Beaver Falls, Pennsylvania.

Roper P; Savery H
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 88-274-1924, 1988 Sep; :1-16
In response to a request from the Pennsylvania Social Services Union, an evaluation was made of possible hazardous working conditions at the Office of Employment Security (SIC-7361), located in Beaver Falls, Pennsylvania. Employees had complained of dizziness; coughing; burning of the eyes, nose and throat; recurring respiratory infections; and other symptoms. The 30 employees handled unemployment benefits claims and operated a job placement service. Potential sources of air contaminants in the building included a dry toner type photocopier, fiberglass insulation inside the air supply ductwork, tobacco smoking, cleaning compounds, office furnishings and supplies, and building construction materials. No carbon-monoxide or nitrogen-dioxide levels were detected. No evidence was found to support any causal relationship between work related experiences and the symptoms expressed by the workers. The authors recommend that specific actions be taken to ensure that the heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) system is operating optimally, that parking of vehicles in the alley where the air intakes are located is prevented, and that certain ergonomic recommendations for operators of video display units are adopted to lessen their muscle fatigue and general discomfort.
NIOSH-Author; NIOSH-Health-Hazard-Evaluation; HETA-88-274-1924; Region-3; Hazard-Unconfirmed; Office-workers; NIOSH-Technical-Assistance-Report; Video-display-terminals; Computer-equipment; Ventilation-systems; Closed-building-syndrome; Author Keywords: employment agencies; government unemployment offices; indoor air quality; building-related illnesses; tight building syndrome; volatile organic compounds; VOCs; fiberglass
Publication Date
Document Type
Field Studies; Hazard Evaluation and Technical Assistance
Fiscal Year
NTIS Accession No.
NTIS Price
Identifying No.
NIOSH Division
SIC Code
7361; 9441
Source Name
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