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Health hazard evaluation report: HETA-95-0225-2596, Abrasive Blasters, Parma and Akron, Ohio.
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 95-0225-2596, 1996 Sep; :1-32
In response to a request from the Ohio Department of Health, a study was begun of possible silicosis in workers involved in or around abrasive blasting operations. Workers were screened from Parma and Akron, Ohio who were involved in abrasive blasting operations in April of 1995. The participants were recruited from the membership of the International Brotherhood of Painters Union. All of the 170 participants had chest X-rays, and 96 (56%) participated in blood lead (7439921) screening as well. Eight of the 170 participants had chest X-rays consistent with pneumoconiosis. All eight had worked as abrasive blasters. Only one of the eight had previously known that his chest X-ray was consistent with this diagnosis. The blood lead levels ranged from 2 to 30 micrograms/deciliter, with a median of 5 micrograms/deciliter. Results of questionnaires indicated deficiencies in knowledge of the proper use of respirators in that only one third of the workers were fit tested and 18% had facial hair that could interfere with respirator seal. There was also little understanding of the NIOSH recommendations to prevent silicosis. The authors conclude that there is a need for better training and education in silicosis prevention and the use of respiratory protection in abrasive blasting operations.
NIOSH-Author; NIOSH-Health-Hazard-Evaluation; NIOSH-Technical-Assistance-Report; HETA-95-0225-2596; Hazard-Confirmed; Region-5; Respiratory-system-disorders; Lung-disease; Chest-X-rays; Respiratory-protective-equipment; Sand-blasting; Author Keywords: Painting and Paper Hanging; Structural Steel Erection; Silica; Crystalline silica; Pneumoconiosis; Silicosis; Respirable Quartz; Sandblasting; Construction; Lead; Abrasive Blasting; Respirator; Steel-Plate Fabrication; Painting Contractor; Abrasive Blasting Contractor
Field Studies; Hazard Evaluation and Technical Assistance
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National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Page last reviewed: May 5, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division