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Arsenic contamination near a copper smelter.
Occupational safety and health symposia 1977. Cincinnati, OH: U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, DHEW (NIOSH) Publication No. 78-169, 1978 Jun; :262-270
Community health problems associated with arsenic (7440382) contamination in the vicinity of the American Smelting and Refining Company in Ruston, Washington were described. Smelter arsenic emissions were estimated at approximately 1,000 pounds per day. Homes were as close as 50 yards to the stack, and the Ruston Elementary School was located 300 yards from the stack. Urinary arsenic levels averaged 81.8 parts per million (ppm) in Ruston School children and 270ppm in preschool children, relative to 20ppm in elementary school children not exposed to arsenic emissions. The urinary arsenic levels in ten children averaged 0.08 parts per million during a plant shut down due to a strike at the smelter. Arsenic levels in the same children were about 0.16ppm the week after the strike was resolved. A traverse study of urinary arsenic levels indicated a range of 48ppm to 300ppm in individuals living from 4 to 0.5 miles from the stack respectively. The results were discussed in relation to ambient air levels of arsenic in the community and the respiratory carcinogenic potential of inhaled arsenic-trioxide (1327533).
Epidemiology; Health-hazards; Environmental-exposure; Environmental-pollution; Air-contamination; Industrial-emissions; Toxic-materials; Smelters
Occupational safety and health symposia 1977
WA; MO; OH
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division