2016-12-01 12:00 - Messages

Respiratory and Ocular Symptoms Among Employees at Swedish Indoor Swimming Pools

Background: This study investigated trichloramine exposure and prevalence of respiratory and ocular symptoms among Swedish indoor swimming pool workers.
Methods: Questionnaires were distributed to pool workers and referents. Lung function and fraction of exhaled nitric oxide (FeNO) were measured before and after work. Exposure to trichloramine and trihalomethanes was measured over work shifts.
Results: The mean personal trichloramine exposure was 36 μg/m3. Significantly more exposed workers reported ocular and nasal symptoms. There were significant differences between groups in FeNO change following work, with exposed showing increased FeNO, which grew when analyses included only nonsmokers.
Conclusions: The findings indicate that indoor swimming pool environments may have irritating effects on mucous membranes. FeNO data also indicate an inflammatory effect on central airways, but the clinical relevance is unclear. Low trichloramine levels found in this study were not associated with health effects.

Source: Löfstedt, H., Westerlund, J., Graff, P., Bryngelsson, L., Mölleby, G., Olin, A. C., ... & Westberg, H. (2016). Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, 58(12), 1190-1195.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/JOM.0000000000000883

Analyse des biomarqueurs dans le condensat de l’air exhalé dans une population de salariés exposés professionnellement au béryllium et/ou ses composés

Métal incontournable dans les industries de pointe à fortes contraintes thermiques et mécaniques, le béryllium peut provoquer une bérylliose pulmonaire chronique (BPC), précédée par un état de sensibilisation au béryllium (SeBe). La valeur limite d'exposition professionnelle sur 8 heures actuellement en vigueur en France insuffisamment protectrice, l'augmentation prévisible du nombre de sujets professionnellement exposés, la latence longue d'apparition de la BPC et l'absence d'outils standardisés de surveillance
médicale justifient l'intérêt d'étudier des biomarqueurs d'exposition et d'effets précoces au niveau de l'organe cible, le poumon. Cette étude propose de les mesurer dans le condensat de l'air exhalé, nouvelle matrice biologique.

Source: Radauceanu, A., Grzebyk, M., Hulo, S., Edmé, J. L., Rousset, D., Dziurla, M., ... & Hédelin, G. (2016). Références en santé au travail.
http://www.inrs.fr/dms/inrs/PDF/TF242.pdf

Perturbateurs endocriniens: un risque professionnel à (re)connaître

Ce guide s'adresse aux représentants de travailleurs, en particulier aux élus des comités de santé, de sécurité et d'hygiène, potentiellement exposés aux perturbateurs endocriniens sur leur lieu de travail. Il a pour objectif de dresser un état des lieux des connaissances scientifiques sur les conséquences sanitaires de l'exposition des travailleurs aux substances chimiques ayant des effets sur le système endocrinien.

Source: http://www.etui.org/fr/Publications2/Guides/Perturbateurs-endocriniens-un-risque-professionnel-a-re-connaitre

Occupational self-coding and automatic recording (OSCAR)

A novel web-based tool to collect and code lifetime job histories in large population-based studies
The traditional manual collection and coding of lifetime job histories is unfeasible in large epidemiological studies. To overcome this, we have developed OSCAR, a new, validated, web-based tool that enables participants to self-collect and code their lifetime job-history efficiently. OSCAR could become the new standard approach to collect and code lifetime occupational exposures in large epidemiological studies.

Source: De Matteis S, Jarvis D, Young H, Young A, Allen N, Potts J, Darnton A, Rushton L, Cullinan P. (2016). Scand J Work Environ Health.
http://dx.doi.org/10.5271/sjweh.3613

Safe storage of wood pellet and wood chip fuel

Wood pellets and wood chip biofuel can produce dangerous (toxic) atmospheres in unventilated, enclosed spaces producing carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide, and depleting oxygen concentrations.
Appropriate controls to control the potential risk are ventilation and restriction of access to unauthorised persons. The stores and their adjacent areas should be assessed to determine if they should be classed as confined spaces. Training and safe working procedures are required.
An HSE Safety Notice has increased awareness of the hazard, particularly amongst operators of small wood pellet or wood chip boiler systems, but the application of controls recommended by HSE is not comprehensive.
Users of stores frequently do not have written risk assessments or safe working procedures in place. There may therefore be a need for further guidance to be produced in this area.

Source: http://www.hse.gov.uk/research/rrpdf/rr1077.pdf

'Safe handling of nanotechnology' ten years on

In 2006, a group of scientists proposed five grand challenges to support the safe handling of nanotechnology. Ten years on, Andrew Maynard and Robert Aitken — two of the original authors — look at where we have come, and where we still need to go.

Source: Maynard, A. D., & Aitken, R. J. (2016). Nature Research.
http://www.nature.com/nnano/journal/v11/n12/full/nnano.2016.270.html

Spontaneous ignition of gas turbine lubricants at temperatures below their standard auto-ignition temperatures

In order to determine how process conditions can influence minimum auto-ignition temperatures in gas turbine enclosures, and other industrial installations, a novel type of calorimeter has been developed at HSE's Buxton research laboratory. This instrument, a Spontaneous Combustion Calorimeter (SCC), has been used to investigate the ignition properties of pure substances, such as n-heptane and compare the results with minimum ignition temperatures determined using standard methods. This was followed by a more detailed investigation of the ignition of gas-turbine lubricants.

Source: http://www.hse.gov.uk/research/rrpdf/rr1076.pdf

Guide to the Electromagnetic Fields Regulations 2016

Electromagnetic fields are generated whenever electricity is used. These guidelines explain the main provisions of the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work (Electromagnetic Fields) Regulations, 2016 (S.I. No. 337 of 2016) in a user friendly way.

Source: http://www.hsa.ie/eng/Publications_and_Forms/Publications/Latest_Publications/Guide_to_the_Electromagnetic_Fields_Regulations_2016.71995.shortcut.html

Données d’intervention sur les chantiers de construction et autres lieux de travail comportant de l’amiante (2012-2014)

Ce rapport présente une analyse des données d’intervention de la Commission des normes, de l’équité, de la santé et de la sécurité du travail sur les chantiers de construction et autres lieux de travail aux prises avec de l’amiante (2012-2014).
L’analyse montre des écarts par rapport aux exigences de certains articles du Code de sécurité pour les travaux de construction.
Ces écarts accroîtraient le risque d’inhalation de fibres d’amiante par les travailleurs du secteur de la construction, jusqu’à la visite des inspecteurs de la Commission.
Les données ne permettent pas de mesurer l’ampleur de l’exposition professionnelle à l’amiante. Elles révèlent toutefois, malgré certaines limites, le niveau de contrôle de l’exposition à l’amiante dans le secteur de la construction.

Source: https://www.inspq.qc.ca/publications/2176

Exposure to metal oxide nanoparticles administered at occupationally relevant doses induces pulmonary effects in mice

In spite of the great promises that the development of nanotechnologies can offer, concerns regarding potential adverse health effects of occupational exposure to nanoparticle (NP) is raised. We recently identified metal oxide NP in lung tissue sections of welders, located inside macrophages infiltrated in fibrous regions. This suggests a role of these NP in the lung alterations observed in welders. We therefore designed a study aimed to investigate the pulmonary effects, in mice, of repeated exposure to NP administered at occupationally relevant doses. We therefore chose four metal oxide NPs representative of those found in the welder's lungs: Fe2O3, Fe3O4, MnFe2O4 and CrOOH. These NPs were administered weekly for up to 3 months at two different doses: 5 μg, chosen as occupationally relevant to welding activity, and 50 μg, chosen as occupationally relevant to the context of an NP-manufacturing facility. Our results show that 3 month-repeated exposures to 5 μg NP induced limited pulmonary effects, characterized by the development of a mild peribronchiolar fibrosis observed for MnFe2O4 and CrOOH NP only. This fibrotic event was further extended in terms of intensity and localization after the repeated administration of 50 μg NP: all but Fe2O3 NP induced the development of peribronchiolar, perivascular and alveolar fibrosis, together with an interstitial inflammation. Our data demonstrate for the first time a potential risk for respiratory health posed by repeated exposure to NP at occupationally relevant doses. Given these results, the development of occupational exposure limits (OELs) specifically dedicated to NP exposure might therefore be an important issue to address.

Source: Présumé, M., Simon-Deckers, A., Tomkiewicz-Raulet, C., Le Grand, B., Tran Van Nhieu, J., Beaune, G., ... & Boczkowski, J. (2016). Nanotoxicology, 1-10.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/17435390.2016.1242797

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