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The stone workers exposure to crystalline silica in the construction industry
PDPI Malang, 03 Mar 2018 13:58:15

Youlim Lee1, Boowook Kim1, Hyun seok Kwak1, So young Park1 and Byung-Soon Choi1
1Occupational Lung Diseases Institute, KCOMWEL, Ansan-si, Gyeonggi-do, Republic of Korea


Purpose: The stone workers can be exposed to crystalline silica, causative agent of lung cancer and silicosis. But the exposure levels of crystalline silica were not investigated in the stone workers of construction industry yet.

Methods: Stone workers are the worker who attaches the stone in the wall. The 23 samples of respirable dust were collected by a cyclone (GK2.69, BGI Corp, USA) in the four construction sites, and then the crystalline silica contents in the samples were analyzed according to the NIOSH method 7500.

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The geometric mean (GM) of crystalline silica contents was 0.043 mg/m3 in the 14 personal samples. Fifty percent and 71% of the personal samples exceeded the Korean occupational exposure limit(0.05 mg/m3) and the ACGIH-TLV(0.025 mg/m3), respectively. Especially, the highest content in the samples, 0.133 mg/m3, was above twice as high as the Korean occupational exposure limit.
The GM of crystalline silica contents was 0.013 mg/m3 in the 9 area samples. None of the area samples exceeded the Korean occupational exposure limit and the ACGIH-TLV.

Conclusions: It was found that the stone workers in the construction industry was exposed to crystalline silica above the current occupational exposure limits and high risk group of occupational lung cancer.