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Drill samplers for quantification of microorganisms in wood.

Dutkiewicz J; Olenchock SA; Lewis DM; Ratajczak Z; Kwapiszewski C; Piech T; Bilczuk A
For Prod J 1989 Feb; 39:61-65
The effectiveness of two new devices that sample wood for the purpose of quantifying its microorganisms was examined. These organisms have caused hazards to sawmill workers by contaminating wood dust that the workers inhale. Sampler number one consists of a cylindrical device equipped with a boring bit that collects pulverized wood into a sterile vial, and a shaft for mounting on a standard boring machine. In operation, the bit was sterilized, the pilot pin punched into the sterilized wood surface, and the sampler began to rotate. Wood dust, from the sample wood, was collected and added to sterile diluent with surfactant. The microorganisms were shaken from the wood, diluted, and incubated on agar media. After incubation, the colonies were counted and differentiated. Sampler number two was a hand twisted bore that worked essentially the same as sampler number one. One difference was that sampler number two could only drill to a depth of 17mm. The two samplers were tested in the field; laboratory tests were also performed on sampler number one. Sterility tests on several samples of sterilized pine were taken and tested for bacteria and fungi growth. None were found. The sampler's effectiveness in detecting a known organism was examined, wood was infected with a fungus and samples were taken at 2, 10, and 18 weeks. The linear growth of the fungus over time demonstrated the effectiveness of the sampler. For the field tests, samples of several different woods were drilled by each sampler. Variations in microbial content which were not detected by traditional methods were found by both samplers. The author concludes that both samplers allow for the effective examination of wood microorganisms. The nonelectric sampler may be more useful for field work.
Woodworking-equipment; Sawmill-workers; Occupational-exposure; Laboratory-testing; Microbiology; Outdoors; Bacterial-cultures; Inhalants; Wood-dusts
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Journal Article
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Forest Products Journal
Page last reviewed: February 18, 2022
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division