HETA Report No. HHE-79-103-108, Illinois Minerals Company, Elco, Illinois.
NIOSH 1979:41 pages
In response to a request from the Mine Safety and Health Administration to investigate the health of employees exposed to silica (7631869) containing dust at Illinois Minerals Company located in Elco, Illinois, a hazard evaluation was conducted. The silica dust on site was approximately 100% alpha-quartz (14808607). Median particle size from air sampled in the facility ranged from 2.3 to 4.9 microns which is well within the respirable range. Of the 57 samples taken, 49 were above the NIOSH recommended limit of workers with less than one year exposure. Three of the fifteen current workers with one or more years of exposure and 14 of the 24 exworkers studied had radiographic changes indicative of silicosis. In workers and exworkers with one or more years of exposure, 17 of 39 had x-ray evidence of silicosis. This very high prevalence of silicosis is due to the respirable size of the particles. It was recommended that engineering controls be implemented to reduce and maintain free silica dust levels to current acceptable exposure limits. The conclusion of the study was that there is a significant health hazard present at this location and continued worker exposure will cause irreversible harm to such a degree as to shorten life.
NIOSH-Author; NIOSH-Health-Hazard-Evaluation; HHE-79-103-108; Region-5; Hazard-Confirmed; Dust-inhalation; Mineral-dusts; Respiratory-system-disorders; Lung-function; Airborne-dusts; Mining-industry; Mineral-processing;
Hazard Evaluation and Technical Assistance; Field Studies
NTIS Accession No.
Environmental Investigations Branch, Division of Respiratory Disease Studies, NIOSH, U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, Morgantown, West Virginia, Report No. HHE-79-103-108, 41 pages, 16 references