Mercury exposure from silver-coated paper used in photo laser machines.
Appl Occup Environ Hyg 1991 Sep; 6(9):754
The potential for mercury (7439976) exposure from the use of silver coated paper in photo laser machines was evaluated at two separate commercial facilities. General area air and personal breathing zones were sampled for inorganic mercury with a sampling train consisting of a cellulose ester membrane filter followed by a solid sorbent tube. These samples were analyzed by cold vapor atomic absorption spectroscopy. Direct reading measurements were also taken throughout the process cycle with a Jerome Model 411 Gold Film Mercury Analyzer. At facility-A airborne concentrations of mercury ranged from nondetectable to 15 micrograms/cubic meter (microg/m3) while at facility-B the concentrations ranged from undetectable to 4microg/m3. The airborne levels of inorganic mercury from all of the personal and area samples were found to be undetectable at both facilities. A potential for the skin absorption of mercury, however, was found to exist from handling the paper or contaminated dust. The author concludes that there is no long or short term health hazard to employees working with or around these photo laser machines, but recommends that nitrile rubber gloves be worn while cleaning the machines and handling the paper used internally. It is also thought that regular changing of the air filters and cleaning of the ventilation diffusers should minimize possible dust circulation.
NIOSH-Author; Industrial-exposures; Inorganic-mercury; Mercury-vapors; Mercury-poisoning; Skin-exposure; Airborne-dusts; Air-sampling-techniques; Industrial-hygiene; Nonferrous-metals; Transition-metals
Applied Occupational and Environmental Hygiene