Scand J Work Environ Health 1976;2 suppl 1:19-31    pdf | Issue date: 1976

Dust exposure in Finnish foundries.

by Siltanen E, Koponen M, Kokko A, Engström B, Reponen J

Dust measurements were made in 51 iron, 9 steel, and 8 nonferrous foundries, at which 4,316 foundrymen were working. The sampling lasted at least two entire shifts or work days continuously during various operations in each foundry. The dust samples were collected at fixed sites or in the breathing zones of the workers. The mass concentration was determined by weighing and the respirable dust fraction was separated by liquid sedimentation. The free silica content was determined by X-ray diffraction. In the study a total of 3,188 samples were collected in the foundries and 6,505 determinations were made in the laboratory. The results indicated a definite difference in the dust exposure during various operations. The highest dust exposures were found during furnace, cupola, and pouring ladle repair. During cleaning work, sand mixing, and shake-out operations excessive silica dust concentrations were also measured. The lowest dust concentrations were measured during melting and pouring operations. Moderate dust concentrations were measured during coremaking and molding operations. The results obtained during the same operations of iron and steel foundries were similar. The distribution of the workers into various exposure categories, the content of respirable dust and quartz, the correlation between respirable dust and total dust, and the correlation between respirable silica and total dust concentrations are discussed. Observations concerning dust suppression and control methods are briefly considered.

The following article refers to this text: 1979;5(3):178-187