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Health hazard evaluation report: HETA-97-0079-2658, Northwest Airlines, Memphis, Tennessee.
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 97-0079-2658, 1997 Oct; :1-15
In response to a request from the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, an investigation of carbon- monoxide (630080) exposures among baggage handlers was conducted at Northwest Airlines (SIC-4581), Memphis, Tennessee. The airline employed about 30 baggage handlers over three shifts. The Baggage Handling facility was an open bay. In the bay, a real time carbon- monoxide monitor was connected to 16 sensors positioned throughout the bay area. Ventilation to the area was provided by 27 separate exhaust diffusers. Twenty nine personal breathing zone measurements were taken and a real time area measurement was also taken. A copy of a confidential symptoms questionnaire was distributed to each baggage handler. Time weighted average (TWA) exposures to carbon- monoxide ranged from 1 to 14 parts per million (ppm). However, peak carbon-monoxide exposures were as high as 393ppm, which exceeds the NIOSH ceiling of 200ppm. TWA concentrations of 1ppm and a peak concentration of 186ppm were recorded during the 24 hour real time area sample. Of the 30 baggage handlers, 16 reported headaches and eye, nose and throat irritation. The author recommended that worker exposure to carbon-monoxide be reduced and that tobacco smoke exposure also be reduced. The potential for heat stress was noted.
NIOSH-Author; NIOSH-Health-Hazard-Evaluation; NIOSH-Technical-Assistance-Report; HETA-97-0079-2658; Hazard-Confirmed; Region-4; Heat-exposure; Ventilation-systems; Airports; Toxic-gases; Air-quality-monitoring; Author Keywords: Airport Terminal Services; carbon monoxide; CO; baggage handlers; baggage facility; exhaust emissions; heat stress; airport
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