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Exposure to tetrachloroethylene in dry cleaning shops in the Nordic countries

Lynge, Elsebeth; Tinnerberg, Håkan LU ; Rylander, Lars LU ; Romundstad, Pal; Johansen, Kristina; Lindbohm, Marja-Liisa; Heikkilä, Pirjo; Westberg, Hakan; Clausen, LB and Piombino, A, et al. (2011) In Annals of Occupational Hygiene 55(4). p.387-396
Abstract
Objectives: Tetrachloroethylene is the dominant solvent used in dry cleaning worldwide and many workers are potentially exposed. We report here on results of 1296 measurements of tetrachloroethylene undertaken in Nordic dry cleaning shops 1947–2001.



Methods: We searched documents and files in the Nordic institutes of occupational health for air measurements of tetrachloroethylene. Repeated measurements from the same facility during a short time interval were registered only once using the time-weighted average. We registered also changes over time in occupational exposure limits (OELs) to tetrachloroethylene.



Results: Only scattered measurements were available from the early years, and the exposure... (More)
Objectives: Tetrachloroethylene is the dominant solvent used in dry cleaning worldwide and many workers are potentially exposed. We report here on results of 1296 measurements of tetrachloroethylene undertaken in Nordic dry cleaning shops 1947–2001.



Methods: We searched documents and files in the Nordic institutes of occupational health for air measurements of tetrachloroethylene. Repeated measurements from the same facility during a short time interval were registered only once using the time-weighted average. We registered also changes over time in occupational exposure limits (OELs) to tetrachloroethylene.



Results: Only scattered measurements were available from the early years, and the exposure level seemed fairly stable up until the mid 1970s. The median exposure level was 20 p.p.m. in 1976 and decreased to 3 p.p.m. in 2000. Exposure levels in the four Nordic countries followed similar trends. In the late 1960s, the OELs varied between the Nordic countries from 30 to 100 p.p.m. Sweden was first to lower the limit, but limits gradually converged over time. At present, Denmark, Finland, and Sweden use 10 p.p.m., while Norway uses 6 p.p.m. Over time, the average observed exposure level was lower than the OEL in all countries, but in Denmark and Sweden, up to one-third of measured exposures exceeded the OEL. Overall, the stationary measurements for maintenance work showed 36 p.p.m., while the personal measurements showed 7.5 p.p.m. for dry cleaners and 6.25 p.p.m. for shop assistants.



Conclusion: The Nordic data illustrate that it is possible over time to control chemical exposures even in an industry consisting of many small and scattered work places. (Less)
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publication status
published
subject
keywords
dry cleaning, exposure assessment, tetrachloroethylene
in
Annals of Occupational Hygiene
volume
55
issue
4
pages
387 - 396
publisher
Oxford University Press
external identifiers
  • wos:000290819400004
  • scopus:79955012095
ISSN
1475-3162
DOI
10.1093/annhyg/meq101
language
English
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yes
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1d47173f-83a5-49ec-873c-827cb1318c19 (old id 1962879)
date added to LUP
2011-07-11 13:07:11
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2017-01-01 05:26:52
@article{1d47173f-83a5-49ec-873c-827cb1318c19,
  abstract     = {Objectives: Tetrachloroethylene is the dominant solvent used in dry cleaning worldwide and many workers are potentially exposed. We report here on results of 1296 measurements of tetrachloroethylene undertaken in Nordic dry cleaning shops 1947–2001.<br/><br>
<br/><br>
Methods: We searched documents and files in the Nordic institutes of occupational health for air measurements of tetrachloroethylene. Repeated measurements from the same facility during a short time interval were registered only once using the time-weighted average. We registered also changes over time in occupational exposure limits (OELs) to tetrachloroethylene.<br/><br>
<br/><br>
Results: Only scattered measurements were available from the early years, and the exposure level seemed fairly stable up until the mid 1970s. The median exposure level was 20 p.p.m. in 1976 and decreased to 3 p.p.m. in 2000. Exposure levels in the four Nordic countries followed similar trends. In the late 1960s, the OELs varied between the Nordic countries from 30 to 100 p.p.m. Sweden was first to lower the limit, but limits gradually converged over time. At present, Denmark, Finland, and Sweden use 10 p.p.m., while Norway uses 6 p.p.m. Over time, the average observed exposure level was lower than the OEL in all countries, but in Denmark and Sweden, up to one-third of measured exposures exceeded the OEL. Overall, the stationary measurements for maintenance work showed 36 p.p.m., while the personal measurements showed 7.5 p.p.m. for dry cleaners and 6.25 p.p.m. for shop assistants.<br/><br>
<br/><br>
Conclusion: The Nordic data illustrate that it is possible over time to control chemical exposures even in an industry consisting of many small and scattered work places.},
  author       = {Lynge, Elsebeth and Tinnerberg, Håkan and Rylander, Lars and Romundstad, Pal and Johansen, Kristina and Lindbohm, Marja-Liisa and Heikkilä, Pirjo and Westberg, Hakan and Clausen, LB and Piombino, A and Thorsted, BL},
  issn         = {1475-3162},
  keyword      = {dry cleaning,exposure assessment,tetrachloroethylene},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {4},
  pages        = {387--396},
  publisher    = {Oxford University Press},
  series       = {Annals of Occupational Hygiene},
  title        = {Exposure to tetrachloroethylene in dry cleaning shops in the Nordic countries},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/annhyg/meq101},
  volume       = {55},
  year         = {2011},
}