Exposure of casino employees to environmental tobacco smoke.
Trout-D; Decker-J; Mueller-C; Bernert-JT; Pirkle-J
J Occup Environ Med 1998 Mar; 40(3):270-276
In response to a request from employees at a casino in Atlantic City, New Jersey, NIOSH performed a field study to evaluate the exposure of gaming floor workers to environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) using both environmental and biologic measures of exposure. Vapor phase nicotine (54115) and respirable particulate were monitored as marker substances for exposure to ETS. Eighteen personal breathing zone (PBZ) samples for nicotine and ten area samples each for nicotine vapor and respirable dust were collected. PBZ nicotine exposures for the Thursday evening monitoring ranged from 6 to 12 micrograms/cubic meter (microg/m3). The highest PBZ sample was from a dealer working a poker game, 12 microg/m3. Twenty nine (10%) of the dealers and supervisors at work during the study participated. None reported current personal tobacco use. Seventeen reported no exposure to ETS outside the workplace. Positive, but nonsignificant, correlations were noted between PBZ air nicotine concentration and both post shift serum cotinine (486566) and cross shift changes in serum cotinine. The duration of ETS exposure reported in the questionnaires was not significantly correlated with serum or urine cotinine concentrations. Working at nonsmoking tables did not measurably decrease employee exposure to ETS. Until tobacco use can be completely eliminated, employers should make efforts to protect employees from ETS by isolating areas where smoking is permitted. Separate smoking areas with dedicated ventilation are a means to accomplish this. Restricting smoking to the outdoors is another method.
NIOSH-Author; Cigarette-smoking; Entertainment-industry; Indoor-air-pollution; Urinalysis; Air-quality-monitoring; Tobacco-smoke; Occupational-exposure; Indoor-environmental-quality
Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine