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Chemical exposures on a new construction site.
Appl Occup Environ Hyg 1995 Feb; 10(2):100-103
Exposures associated with construction of a four story steel structure in suburban Maryland were investigated. A considerable number of brief, intermittent chemical exposures occurred during the execution of this project. Fireproofing composed of a resin coated slag/rock wool was sprayed on steel beams and columns. Workers complained of eye and skin irritation. Roofers were engaged in installing a four ply build up roof system on the building. The task involved layering insulation and felt paper with several coats of hot asphalt. The kettle operator had the highest exposures, ranging from 10.4 to 28.85mg/m3 of total fume particulate and a benzene soluble fraction particulate concentration of 21.8 micrograms/cubic meter. Laborers and operating engineers were also exposed. Ironworkers and steamfitters were exposed to welding fumes. Exposures were also noted to dusts and quartz (14808-60-7) along with epoxy resin. The authors conclude that there are a number of chemical exposures on new construction sites for which few if any controls are used and there appears to be a general lack of awareness of the health risks associated with these hazards. The authors recommend measures to increase the safety of similar workplaces.
Construction-industry; Construction-workers; Roofing-industry; Airborne-particles; Air-quality-monitoring; Welding-industry; Adhesives; Organic-solvents; Occupational-exposure
Pam Susi, The Center to Protect Workers' Rights, 111 Massachusetts Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20001
Cooperative Agreement; Construction
Issue of Publication
Applied Occupational and Environmental Hygiene
Center to Protect Workers' Rights, Washington, DC
Page last reviewed: May 5, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division