Information was presented on occupational hazards associated with ferrous smelting and steel manufacturing. Exposures to high temperatures through the operation of the furnaces, coke ovens, sintering and pelletizing equipment and during inprocessing and product finishing activities have resulted in burns, eye injuries, and heat stress. Exposure to chemical contaminants during the smelting and manufacturing stages has been shown to cause respiratory distress and lung cancer. Among the most serious of these contaminants were benzopyrene (50328), carbon-monoxide (630080), coal and coke dust, coke oven emissions, manganese compounds, nitrogen oxides, particulates, and sulfur oxides. Toxicological and physiological properties of chemical substances encountered during ferrous smelting and steel manufacturing were listed. Exposures to loud noise, vibration, and radiation at potentially hazardous levels were also possible. Current standards and NIOSH recommended limits for typical process materials, byproducts, emissions, additives, and impurities associated with the iron and steel industry were listed.
Syracuse Research Corp., Center for Chemical Hazard Assessment, Syracuse, NY