NIOSHTIC-2 Publications Search
Health hazard evaluation report: HETA-89-052-2006, Alma American Labs, Fairplay, Colorado.
Lee SA; Goldfield J; Hales TR
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 89-052-2006, 1990 Jan; :1-29
In response to a request from Alma American Labs (SIC-1041), Fairplay, Colorado, an investigation was made of possible hazardous working conditions at the site, specifically employee exposures to lead (7439921). The company used a fire assaying process to separate noble metals from their ores using dry reagents and heat. Two assayists, one sample preparation employee, one chemist and two office workers were employed at the laboratory. Personal breathing zone and area air samples were collected and employees completed a self administered questionnaire regarding personal medical and occupational histories. Each employee was also subjected to a limited physical examination and a blood analysis for lead and free erythrocyte protoporphyrin. Two assay workers had full shift personal breathing zone air lead concentrations of 120 and 200 micrograms/cubic meter (microg/m3), compared to the OSHA permissible exposure limit of 50microg/m3. The blood lead levels for these workers were 39 and 55 micrograms/deciliter, respectively. Short term air sampling revealed that dispensing the flux contributed significantly to employee exposure. The authors conclude that a health hazard existed from exposure to lead in fire assay operations at this facility. The investigators offer recommendations designed to reduce the hazardous exposures.
NIOSH-Author; NIOSH-Health-Hazard-Evaluation; NIOSH-Technical-Assistance-Report; HETA-89-052-2006; Hazard-Confirmed; Region-8; Lead-poisoning; Heavy-metals; Fire-assays; Biological-monitoring; Occupational-exposure; Author Keywords: Gold Ores; Fire Assay; Gold Assay; Lead; Blood Lead; FEP; ZPP; Litharge
Field Studies; Hazard Evaluation and Technical Assistance
NTIS Accession No.
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Page last reviewed: February 14, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division