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Health hazard evaluation report: HETA-91-270-2279, U.S. Shoe, Cincinnati, Ohio.

Miller A; Kinnes GM; Brightman H
Cincinnati, OH: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, HETA 91-270-2279, 1993 Jan; :1-21
In response to a request from the employees of U.S. Shoe (SIC-5139), Cincinnati, Ohio, an investigation was begun into the occurrence of cancers in the Cobblershop area of the Finished Goods Warehouse. Employees were also concerned with exposure to volatile organic chemicals. The Warehouse employed 138 workers, of which 15 worked in the Cobblershop area. Returned and damaged shoes were repaired and reconditioned in the Cobblershop area. A rag dipped in cleaning solvent was used to remove residual price stickers, marks, or scuffs from the returned shoes. Two solvents were used in this process, Product-690 which contained 45% methyl-ethyl-ketone (78933) (MEK), 45% acetone (67641), and 10% toluene (108883), and Product-622 which contained 90% naphtha (8030306) and 10% heptane (142825). Solvent exposures measured in the Cobblershop area were all below the allowable levels. Some workers reported symptoms which were consistent with solvent exposure. The current chemical exposures did not appear to have an appreciable cancer causing potential. There were eight cases of cancer among the 39 workers employed in the Cobblershop over the last 10 years. The OSHA action level of 85 decibels-A for noise was exceeded at some locations. The authors conclude that distribution of cancer cases was not suggestive of any single occupational cause. Workers were experiencing symptoms consistent with periods of exposure to volatile organic chemicals. The authors recommend that the potential for exposure to noise and organic chemicals be reduced.
NIOSH-Author; NIOSH-Health-Hazard-Evaluation; NIOSH-Technical-Assistance-Report; HETA-91-270-2279; Hazard-Confirmed; Region-5; Solvent-vapors; Cleaning-compounds; Shoe-manufacturing; Ketones; Organic-solvents; Occupational-exposure; Cancer-rates; Author Keywords: footwear; cancer; methyl ethyl ketone; acetone; naphtha; benzene; noise
78-93-3; 67-64-1; 108-88-3; 8030-30-6; 142-82-5
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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