IVL Swedish Environmental Research Institute

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  • 1.
    Kathare, Maitreyi
    et al.
    Integrative Toxicology, Institute of Environmental Medicine, Karolinska Institutet , Stockholm , Sweden.
    Julander, Anneli
    IVL Swedish Environmental Research Institute. Integrative Toxicology, Institute of Environmental Medicine, Karolinska Institutet , Stockholm , Sweden;Sustainable work and management, IVL Swedish Environmental Research Institute , Stockholm , Sweden.
    Erfani, Behnaz
    Integrative Toxicology, Institute of Environmental Medicine, Karolinska Institutet , Stockholm , Sweden.
    Schenk, Linda
    Integrative Toxicology, Institute of Environmental Medicine, Karolinska Institutet , Stockholm , Sweden;Department of Philosophy and History, Royal Institute of Technology , Stockholm , Sweden.
    An Overview of Cleaning Agents’ Health Hazards and Occupational Injuries and Diseases Attributed to Them in Sweden2022In: Annals of Work Exposures and Health, ISSN 2398-7308, Vol. 66, no 6, p. 741-753Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Using data from the Swedish Products Register, hosted by the Swedish Chemicals Agency (KemI),national occupational injury and disease statistics, and call records from the Swedish PoisonsInformation Centre (PIC) we characterize health hazards of marketed cleaning products and recordedinjuries, disease, and incidents linked to cleaning or disinfection agents.

    The results showthat cleaning agents pose many kinds of health hazards, although corrosion and irritation hazardsdominate, in particular for the eyes (54% of all included products).

    Few products were recognizedas inhalation hazards. The nature of the health hazards is reflected in the occupational disease andinjury statistics and PIC records for eyes and skin but not for the respiratory tract. Among occupationaldisease cases attributed to cleaning or disinfection agents, 61% concern skin and 26% therespiratory tract.

    Among occupational injury cases 64% concern chemical burns. However, only asmall part (<0.5%) of all reported diseases and injuries were explicitly attributed to cleaning or disinfectionagents.

    On average, there were 11 cases of disease attributed to cleaning or disinfectionagents per million workers and year. For occupational injuries the corresponding number was 8. Thedata concern a broad range of sectors and occupations, but notable sectors were healthcare, accommodationand food service, and manufacturing.

    Women were more likely to suffer from disease,men and women equally likely to suffer from injury. PIC cases were evenly distributed between menand women, but the clear risk cases more frequently involved men.

    Occupational diseases increasedmany-fold in 2020 while injuries decreased, which could be due to COVID-19 changing use patternsof cleaning and disinfection agents at work.

    We conclude that cleaning agents pose a variety of risksto a large part of the workforce, although particular attention for preventive efforts may need to bedirected to the healthcare, accommodation and food service, and manufacturing sectors.

  • 2.
    Langer, Sarka
    et al.
    IVL Swedish Environmental Research Institute Göteborg Sweden.
    de Wit, Cynthia A.
    Department of Environmental Science Stockholm University Stockholm Sweden.
    Giovanoulis, Georgios
    IVL Swedish Environmental Research Institute Stockholm Sweden.
    Fäldt, Jenny
    City of Stockholm Environment and Health Administration Environmental Analysis Stockholm Sweden.
    Karlson, Linnéa
    City of Stockholm Environment and Health Administration Environmental Analysis Stockholm Sweden.
    The effect of reduction measures on concentrations of hazardous semivolatile organic compounds in indoor air and dust of Swedish preschools2021In: Indoor Air, ISSN 0905-6947, E-ISSN 1600-0668Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Young children spend a substantial part of their waking time in preschools. It is therefore important to reduce the load of hazardous semivolatile organic compounds (SVOCs) in the preschools’ indoor environment. The presence and levels of five SVOC groups were evaluated (1) in a newly built preschool, (2) before and after renovation of a preschool, and (3) in a preschool where SVOC-containing articles were removed. The new building and therenovation were performed using construction materials that were approved with respect to content of restricted chemicals. SVOC substance groups were measured in indoor air and settled dust and included phthalates and alternative plasticizers, organophosphate esters (OPEs), brominated flame retardants, and bisphenols.

    The most abundant substance groups in both indoor air and dust were phthalates and alternative plasticizers and OPEs. SVOC concentrations were lower or of the same order of magnitude as those reported in comparable studies. The relative Cumulative Hazard Quotient (HQcum) was used to assess the effects of the different reduction measures on children's SVOC exposure from indoor air and dust in the preschools. HQcum values were low (1.0–6.1%)in all three preschools and decreased further after renovation and article substitution. The SVOCs concentrationsdecreased significantly more in the preschool renovated with the approved building materials than in the preschool where the SVOC-containing articles were removed.

  • 3.
    Midander, Klara
    et al.
    IVL Swedish Environmental Research Institute.
    Sahlberg, Bo
    IVL Swedish Environmental Research Institute.
    Referensmätning av kvartsdamm inom väg- och anläggningsprojekt med fokus på arbetsmoment inom losshållning och asfaltfräsning2023Report (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Crystalline silica (quartz) is one of the most commonly occurring minerals in Sweden and is thus found in many different industrial processes related to the processing of, for example, bedrock, sand, cement and concrete. Exposure to crystalline silica via the respiratory tract is harmful to health and can lead to acute symptoms of silicosis as well as chronic disease long after exposure (more than 10 years). Other diseases associated with crystalline silica exposure are, for example, lung cancer, cardiovascular disease and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). There is an occupational exposure limit value for respirable crystalline silica of 0.1 mg/m3 and in the national regulation, the Swedish Work Environment Authority (AFS 2015:2 Kvarts - stendamm i arbetsmiljön) has opened up for the use of reference measurements, i.e. measurement results under equivalent conditions, in risk assessment of exposed work.

    This report presents an approach to generate reference measurements for exposed work tasks within road- and construction projects with a focus on extraction of rock (including drilling, blasting etc.) and asphalt milling.A total of 62 personal measurements of respirable dust were carried out on 18 different occasions during the autumn/spring and summer season. The compilation of the results also includes 5 measurement results for drilling and blasting carried out by other actors. During the measurements, which took place during a normal work shift, the participants carried a battery-powered pump that drew air through a filter sampler with a cyclone, which was placed in the breathing zone. The filters were gravimetrically weighed to determine respirable dust and crystalline silica content was analyzed by X-ray diffraction.The results show that all concentrations of respirable crystalline silica at work tasks within rock extraction were well below the limit value of 0.1 mg/m3 with some values above half of the limit value. Measured levels of respirable dust were also very low, all below 0.25 mg/m3, one tenth of the limit value.

    The concentrations of respirable crystalline silica in asphalt milling were generally below the limit value but varied to a greater extent among the different work tasks within the team, compared to measured dust levels. The highest exposure was noted for participants who worked with milling machines without a cabin, as well as for participants who supervised the milling and thus moved next to work in progress. Parallel measurements during asphalt milling in Skåne and Mälardalen illustrated the importance of the crystalline silica content in bedrock/raw material. The difference between the measurements was clear for all tasks within the milling team, with a higher percentage of crystalline silica in the dust when milling in Skåne.

    Our measurements of respirable crystalline silica showed generally low exposure levels, which did not lead to further investigation of the possible effect of dust reduction measures. In the future, it would be interesting to also measure the inhalable fraction to better understand how a perceived dusty work environment can be reflected in crystalline silica and dust contents of different particle sizes. To clarify which parameters are most important for assessing and managing risk in exposed work is still important, not least to facilitate and make reference measurements practically useful.

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