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NIOSH testimony on interim decompression tables for caisson and tunnel workers by J. D. Millar, July 12, 1985.
Cincinnati, OH: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, 1985 Jul; :1-54
This testimony concerned the regulations of OSHA related to decompression of employees returning to normal atmospheric pressures from work in caissons or other areas of elevated pressures. The current regulations were based on tables which it was felt were inadequate to prevent acute, chronic or disabling injuries. Until definitive decompression tables have been obtained, such workers have been provided with interim tables which should provide a greatly increased margin of safety in decompression operations. NIOSH recommends that the enforcement activities on those sections of the current regulations which are known to be hazardous be suspended and that the interim tables be used as a consideration when applications for variances are considered. Specifically, NIOSH concluded that the C-3A Air Interim Decompression Tables be required as a minimum for further caisson/tunnel work until laboratory tested tables are available, that the G-3A1 Air Interim Decompression Table be used as a backup for the G-3A where environmental or individual conditions warrant, that the G-3B Oxygen Interim Decompression Tables not be used unless the contractor is willing to obtain special training for the personnel involved and properly maintain the required oxygen equipment, that the G-3C Air Saturation Interim Decompression Table be used whenever operational needs or emergencies require workers to remain under hyperbaric conditions for more than 8 hours, and that records of any incidents of decompression illness continue to be sent to OSHA.
NIOSH-Author; NIOSH-Testimony; Millar-J-D; Tunnel-workers; Construction-workers; Caisson-workers; Caisson-disease; Hyperbarism; Hyperbaric-environments
NTIS Accession No.
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
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Page last reviewed: May 5, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division