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Health hazard evaluation report: HETA-96-0241-2634, Maricopa County Sheriff's Office, Phoenix, Arizona.
Burton NC; Boudreau Y
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 96-0241-2634, 1997 Apr; :1-9
In response to a request from employees of the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office (SIC-9221), Phoenix, Arizona, an investigation was begun into possible exposures to potential biological hazards including blood borne pathogens, and odors related to the storage and handling of evidence. The evidence drying room was used by about 70 employees, including detectives, and evidence/laboratory technicians. Evidence placed in the room included blood and body fluid soaked articles of clothing, objects found in sewers, and items used to cover decedents. Personal protective equipment was available for use in the field and in the evidence drying room. The room was located in the basement of the criminal court system complex and there were complaints of the same foul odors in other sections of the building. Low ventilation rates were noted at about three air changes per hour (ACH). Increasing the air ventilation rates to about 45ACH caused a noticeable reduction in the foul odor. The authors conclude that there are potential risks of exposure to blood borne pathogens such as human immunodeficiency virus, especially in the field. The authors recommend the increased use of personal protective equipment, along with improvements in the ventilation system.
NIOSH-Author; NIOSH-Health-Hazard-Evaluation; NIOSH-Technical-Assistance-Report; HETA-96-0241-2634; Hazard-Confirmed; Region-9; Viral-infections; Disease-transmission; AIDS-virus; Law-enforcement-workers; Ventilation-systems; Personal-protective-equipment; Author Keywords: Police Protection; evidence drying room; blood-borne pathogens; decaying organic material; personal protective equipment; ventilation
Field Studies; Hazard Evaluation and Technical Assistance
NTIS Accession No.
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