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Hazardous waste sites.
Melius JM; Costello RJ; Dahlstrom DL
Occupational medicine: principles and practical applications, second edition. Zenz C, ed. Chicago: Year Book Medical Publishers, Inc., 1988 Feb; :1061-1066
Occupational health effects in workers at hazardous waste disposal sites were investigated. The presence of diverse contaminants required multiple sampling procedures. A recent NIOSH study at four hazardous waste sites including two remedial actions, a municipal landfill, and a waste treatment facility showed that no contamination exceeded 10% of the appropriate OSHA time weighted average standard. Only heat stress, dermal exposure due to improper protective clothing, and eye and respiratory irritation due to particulate bound polynuclear aromatic compounds were noted. Medical surveillance for hazardous waste workers included comprehensive preplacement examinations to determine the worker's mental and physical fitness to perform the assigned task as well as for establishing an individual baseline of useful medical data. Suggested occupational medical examination parameters were presented. Periodic screening examinations were necessary to detect any deleterious effects of exposure, and to ensure that the employee remained fit to perform the tasks. Exit/termination medical examinations were needed to identify medical abnormalities which may have resulted from chemical exposure during the period of employment. The evaluation of employee medical records to ensure continued protection of worker health was stressed. The authors conclude that the program must be coordinated to assure the health and safety of workers.
Environmental-contamination; Hazardous-materials; Hazardous-waste-cleanup; Occupational-exposure; Occupational-hazards; Occupational-safety-programs; Protective-measures; Safety-practices
Occupational medicine: principles and practical applications, second edition
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Page last reviewed: November 13, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division