Osha Case Study

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Alt IV Controls OSHA OSHA Standards that May Apply to Nanomaterial Hazards Currently, there are no specific exposure limits for airborne nanoparticles, although occupational exposure limits (OELs) exist for numerous larger particles with similar chemical composition. It is imperative to recognize that OELs recommended for non-nanoscale particles likely are not health protective for nanoparticle exposures. A specific example of this is demonstrated with graphite where the the OSHA Permissible Exposure Limit [PEL] may not be a safe exposure limit for carbon nanotubes. Nanomaterial use can be regulated by the OSHA General Duty Clause, Section 5(a)(1). Additionally, OSHA has prepared a Nanotechnology Safety and Health Topics Page on the OSHA…show more content…
The current research demonstrates that bulk chemistry and mass measurements may be less suited for assessment than the nanoparticle’s properties of surface chemistry, surface area, and particle size. Most of the current sampling techniques utilized for measuring airborne nanoaerosols are not readily applicable to nanoparticle exposure monitoring. When possible, personal air sampling is preferable to provide an accurate representation of the worker’s actual exposure, as opposed to real-time monitoring or area air sampling exposure measurements to evaluate work practices and engineering controls. Improvement of Health Hazard Controls An essential component of an effective occupational safety and health program involves occupational health surveillance. Consideration of an occupational health surveillance program is justified due to the unique chemical and physical and properties of nanomaterials. Further, data suggesting that exposure to engineered nanomaterials has the potential to cause adverse health effects in laboratory animals, and the increasing utilization of nanotechnology in the workplace, and all support for workers potentially exposed to engineered nanomaterials militates in favor of a surveillance program. As presented in the NIOSH document “Current
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