Exposure to particulate matter on an Indian stone-crushing site

Semple, S.; Green, D. A.; McAlpine, G.; Cowie, H.; Seaton, A.
May 2008
Occupational & Environmental Medicine;May2008, Vol. 65 Issue 5, p300
Academic Journal
Background/objectives: A large number of labourers work in the stone-crushing industry in India. Many of these workers are also exposed to high levels of particulate matter in their homes from the use of biomass fuels. As part of our investigations to examine the health of these workers we characterised their exposure to respirable crystalline silica and a number of other particulate matter exposure metrics in both occupational and domestic settings. Methods: We used a combination of direct reading and gravimetric sampling of respirable dust, total inhalable dust and particulate matter <2.5 μm in diameter (PM2.5) at work (n = 19), within the general environment (n = 6) and inside the home (n = 7). We used x-ray diffraction to quantify the level of crystalline silica in the respirable dust samples. Results: After correcting for the length of the working week, the arithmetic mean 8-hour time-weighted average (TWA) total inhalable dust exposure for this group was 143 mg/m3, the mean 8-hour TWA respirable dust exposure was 39.7 mg/m3 and the 8-hour TWA crystalline silica exposure was 2.29 mg/m3. Our real-time data showed peaks in exposure under certain environmental and/or working conditions. General environmental and domestic PM2.5 exposures were also high. Conclusions: Particulate matter exposures experienced by this group of workers and their families are likely to produce impaired lung function within a short time-frame. There is a need to introduce simple measures to reduce particulate matter exposure from both occupational sources and the use of biomass fuels in homes on this and similar sites.


Related Articles

  • Mineral dust exposure in young Indian adults: an effect on lung growth? Green, D. A.; McAlpine, G.; Semple, S.; Cowie, H.; Seaton, A. // Occupational & Environmental Medicine;May2008, Vol. 65 Issue 5, p306 

    Background/objective: Long-term occupational exposure to mineral dusts including quartz is known to cause pneumoconiosis but little is known about the effects of such exposure during the period of lung development in childhood. The objective of this study was to investigate the effects on young...

  • THE HUMAN DYNAMICS OF INJURY PREVENTION (Part 1) From Behavior-Based to People-Based Safety. Geller, E. Scott // Occupational Hazards;Oct2006, Vol. 68 Issue 10, p78 

    The article proposes the need to address both behavior-based and person-based factors to improve workplace safety. A list of terms used to address the human dynamics of injury prevention is presented. It analyzes the seven underlying principles of people-based safety (PBS) approach. It compares...

  • A Study of the Lagged Relationships Among Safety Climate, Safety Motivation, Safety Behavior, and Accidents at the Individual and Group Levels. Neal, Andrew; Griffin, Mark A. // Journal of Applied Psychology;Jul2006, Vol. 91 Issue 4, p946 

    The authors measured perceptions of safety climate, motivation, and behavior at 2 time points and linked them to prior and subsequent levels of accidents over a 5-year period. A series of analyses examined the effects of top-down and bottom-up processes operating simultaneously over time. In...

  • Regulation and Productivity. Dufour, Charles; Lanoie, Paul; Patry, Michel // Journal of Productivity Analysis;May1998, Vol. 9 Issue 3, p233 

    We investigate the impact of occupational safety and health (OSH) and environmental regulation on the rate of growth of total factor productivity (TFP) in the Quebec manufacturing sector during the 1985-88 period. Our results show that environmental regulation and OSH protective reassignments (a...

  • MSHA Makes Crandall Canyon Mine Criminal Referral.  // Occupational Hazards;Oct2008, Vol. 70 Issue 10, p19 

    The article reports that MSHA has made a criminal referral issues relating to the Crandall Canyon Mine in Utah. The criminal referral arises out of the same facts, events and conditions that led to MSHA's issuance of civil citations and orders. Richard E. Stickler, MSHA administrator, said that...

  • HAND PROTECTION: How to assess risk. Marks, Alex // Industrial Safety & Hygiene News;Jul2006, Vol. 40 Issue 7, p30 

    The article provides information on the use of gloves for hand protection. Accordingly, to assess risks against industrial accidents, a company must conduct a glove audit as a means of reducing injuries, lowering costs and consolidating glove usage. The goal of the audit is to better able to...

  • Almost everyone needs a WORKING ALONE policy. Coble, David S. // Industrial Safety & Hygiene News;Sep2004, Vol. 38 Issue 9, p63 

    Suggests that most fixed site jobs in factories, warehouses and buildings expose employees to hazards when there may not be other people around. Need for employers to have a formal work-alone policy; Definition of tasks that are not suitable for working alone; Steps to take in ensuring the...

  • Global Harmonization.  // Professional Safety;Jan2007, Vol. 52 Issue 1, p8 

    The article discusses the professional opinion by the American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE) to address occupational safety and health hazards concern specifically the step taken by Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) towards a unified rulemaking on hazard communications....

  • Integración de la SST en la gestión de las empresas. García, Ricardo Fernández // Gestión Práctica de Riesgos Laborales;dic2010, Issue 77, p40 

    No abstract available.


Read the Article


Sign out of this library

Other Topics