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Health hazard evaluation report: HETA-94-0219-2620, Walsh Construction Company, Boston, Massachusetts.
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 94-0219-2620, 1997 Jan; :1-21
In response to a request from representatives of Walsh Construction Company (SIC-1611), an investigation was begun of possible exposures and potential health effects associated with asphalt paving at the Boston Third Harbor Tunnel Construction site in Boston, Massachusetts. A walk through visit, and industrial hygiene and medical assessments were conducted on two paving crews. The highest concentrations of total particulate (TP), benzene soluble fraction (BSF), and polycyclic aromatic compounds (PACs) were measured above the paver screened auger. None of the personal breathing zone exposures to asphalt fumes exceeded the recommended limits. Low molecular weight PACs measured in every PAC sample exceeded the high molecular weight PACs. Measured area TP, BSF, and PAC concentrations were up to ten times higher than those found during open air paving, indicating that the ventilation within the tunnel was very poor. The most frequently reported symptoms were eye irritation, cough, nasal irritation and shortness of breath. Three workers demonstrated significant bronchial lability during the survey. One of these reported acute respiratory symptoms concurrent with bronchoreactivity. Some pavers may have been exposed to total particulate concentrations which exceeded the NIOSH 15 minute ceiling.
NIOSH-Author; NIOSH-Health-Hazard-Evaluation; NIOSH-Technical-Assistance-Report; HETA-94-0219-2620; Region-1; Hazard-Confirmed; Construction-workers; Road-construction; Road-surfacing; Macadam-pavements; Asphalt-fumes; Occupational-exposure; Polycyclic-aromatic-hydrocarbons;
Field Studies; Hazard Evaluation and Technical Assistance
NTIS Accession No.
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Page last reviewed: April 12, 2019
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division