Federal agencies Workplace exposures

NIOSH to study worker exposures at electronics recycling facilities

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Washington – NIOSH has announced the next step in its efforts to learn more about occupational exposures at electronic scrap recycling facilities.

As part of the project, NIOSH is seeking five facilities that are willing to participate in its Health Hazard Evaluation Program. Participation is free, and NIOSH will post the results on its HHE website.

Recycled electronics may include hazardous materials such as lead, cadmium and other toxic metals, according to NIOSH. In previous studies, the agency has determined that overexposure to lead and cadmium can occur at facilities that process cathode ray tube glass.

For the upcoming study, a group of industrial hygienists and medical officers will visit each participating facility to assess worker exposures to metals such as lead, cadmium and indium, as well as flame retardants such as polybrominated diphenyl ethers. Researchers also will evaluate the use of personal protective equipment and the effectiveness of local exhaust ventilation and other engineering controls.

Email HHERequestHelp@cdc.gov to learn more about NIOSH’s HHE program.