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Health hazard evaluation report: HETA-89-083-2134, Parker Hannifin Corporation, Ravenna, Ohio.

Orgel DL
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 89-083-2134, 1991 Sep; :1-34
In response to a worker request, a study was undertaken of possible hazardous working conditions at the Parflex Division of the Parker Hannifin Corporation (SIC-3041), Ravenna, Ohio. There were 202 hourly workers at the facility which produced thermoplastic flexible hose and tubing using an extrusion process. The products may be composed of polyethylene, polyvinylchloride (PVC), polypropylene, nylon, polyester, or polyurethane. A high prevalence of respiratory complaints was documented among the employees. These were not isolated to a particular part of the site or occupation, but were instead generalized throughout the facility. There was potential exposure to isocyanates during both extrusion and cabling. Peak flow monitoring documented eight of 52 employees tested with results indicative of work related reversible airway obstruction who also had respiratory symptoms at work and a history of asthma. Immunologic testing revealed only one employee with an isocyanate specific immunoglobulin-E. The author concludes that exposures to isocyanates occurred, and that in some individuals these exposures may be the cause of the symptoms. The author recommends that improvements be made in the ventilation conditions at the facility, and that personal protective equipment in use be upgraded.
NIOSH-Author; NIOSH-Health-Hazard-Evaluation; NIOSH-Technical-Assistance-Report; HETA-89-083-2134; Hazard-Confirmed; Region-5; Respiratory-system-disorders; Exhaust-ventilation; Plastics-industry; Occupational-exposure; Bronchial-asthma; Author Keywords: rubber and plastics hose and belting; asthma; peak flow testing; isocyanates; RAST testing; ELISA testing; 2,4-toluene diisocyanate; 2,4-TDI; 2,6-diisopropylphenyl isocyanate; 2,6 PPI
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Field Studies; Hazard Evaluation and Technical Assistance
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National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division