Evaluation and control of occupational health risks from nanoparticles

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Rapid growth in the nanoparticle industry is anticipated in the Nordic countries owing to highly focused national research and investment initiatives. Knowledge on consequences for occupational exposures to engineered nanoparticles and appropriate technical control levels is still limited. This report explores existing knowledge on exposure risks and technical control approaches. The report concludes that data are too limited to allow general conclusions to be drawn regarding risks of exposure to engineered nanoparticles. Engineering techniques for controlling nanoparticle exposure can build on the current knowledge and approaches to control exposure to e.g. welding fume and carbon black. There is a need for improving the quality of information provided in Material Safety Data Sheets.



Quality of information in MSDS

Material safety data sheets (MSDS) are important for safe handling of chemicals at the work place. The EU has legislated the requirements and instructions for MSDS in Commission directive 91/155/EEC of 5 March 1991 which was amended in 2001 (Com. Dir. 2001/58/EC). The design of MSDS is similar, although not identical, in countries outside the EU. Classification and labelling as “hazardous” has many consequences for the compound in question, e.g. regarding exposure control, first aid measures, storage, and transportation requirements.


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