The concentration of carbon monoxide in the breathing areas of workers during logging operations at the motor-manual level

OBJECTIVES: This article compares 2 variants of logging technologies at the motor-manual level: variant A - cutting and delimbing by means of a petrol chainsaw, skidding with the use of a cable winch mounted on a tractor (67-74 kW); variant B - cutting by means of a petrol chainsaw, skidding, debranching and cutting to length by means of a processor aggregated with a farm tractor (61 kW). MATERIAL AND METHODS: Direct dosimetry and non-parametric (moving block bootstrap) methods were used in order to specify the characteristics of the collected sets.
RESULTS: Bootstrap average values show that the average CO concentration at a skidding tractor operator's station during early thinning was 2.54 mg×m(-3). At processor operator's station it amounted to 10.35 mg×m(-3). Such results allow to conclude that a higher CO concentration at the above-mentioned 2 work stations was observed during early thinning. In the case of a petrol chainsaw operator, it was observed that the permissible exposure limit (23 mg×m(-3)) was exceeded and the short-term permissible exposure limit (117 mg×m(-3)) was not. The average concentration value for a chainsaw operator working individually during late thinning interventions was substantially lower (15.01 mg×m(-3)), which results from the lack of technological pressure that can be observed while cooperating with a processor operator.
CONCLUSIONS: The risk increases along with conditions that generate the concentration of exhaust produced by 2-stroke petrol chainsaw engines.

Source: Leszczynski K. Int. J. Occup. Med. Environ. Health, 2014.

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