NIOSH 1992 Feb:41 pages
In response to a request from the National Park Service, an evaluation was begun into worker exposure to forest fire smoke at Yellowstone National Park (SIC-0851), Wyoming. The National Park Service requested assistance in identifying and quantifying exposures to chemicals in smoke and in determining the impact of exposure to this smoke on the forest fire fighter. Investigations were conducted during mop up and fire break construction at three forest fires in 1988. Personal breathing zone air monitoring was conducted for carbon-monoxide (630080) (CO), carbon-dioxide (124389), sulfur-dioxide (7446095), and nitrogen-dioxide (10102440). Sampling was also conducted for aldehydes, volatile organic compounds, total particulates, and polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons. Preshift and postshift concentrations of carboxyhemoglobin were determined from blood samples. The CO levels were below the NIOSH recommended exposure limit of 35 parts per million. However, when adjustments were made for the length of the workshift, level of work activity, and altitude, results suggested that a potential health hazard may have existed. Medical reports indicated the fire fighters experienced a high degree of eye and upper respiratory tract irritation. The authors conclude that a potential health hazard may exist from exposure to carbon-monoxide. The authors recommend that the use of bandannas as respirators be eliminated. Further exposure assessment and medical research into exposures encountered during fire fighting operations should be conducted.
NIOSH-Author; NIOSH-Health-Hazard-Evaluation; NIOSH-Technical-Assistance-Report; HETA-88-320-2176; Hazard-Confirmed; Region-8; Air-quality-monitoring; Forestry-workers; Toxic-gases; Fire-hazards; Combustion-products; Occupational-exposure; Fire-fighting;
630-08-0; 124-38-9; 7446-09-5; 10102-44-0;
Hazard Evaluation and Technical Assistance;
NTIS Accession No.
Hazard Evaluations and Technical Assistance Branch, NIOSH, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Cincinnati, Ohio, Report No. HETA-88-320-2176, 41 pages, 27 references