Hydrogen sulfide exposure is covered under the following OSHA standards:
Exposures must not exceed 20 parts per million (ppm) (ceiling) with the following exception: if no other measurable exposure occurs during the 8-hour work shift, exposures may exceed 20 ppm, but not more than 50 ppm (peak), for a single time period up to 10 minutes.
Sets exposure limit of 10 ppm (15 mg/m3) time-weighted average (TWA)
Sets exposure limit of 10 ppm (15 mg/m3) TWA
29 CFR 1910.119 App A and 29 CFR 1926.64 App A, List of highly hazardous chemicals, toxics and reactives (mandatory). Hydrogen sulfide is included in these lists of toxic and reactive highly hazardous chemicals and is considered to present a potential for a catastrophic event at or above 1500 pounds.
Below are standards that include OSHA requirements for evaluating (e.g., process safety, toxic and hazardous substances) and controlling (ventilation, respiratory protection) hydrogen sulfide exposures, including in confined spaces. Industry-specific requirements (construction, shipyard, marine terminals and longshoring) follow.
General Industry (29 CFR 1910)
Construction (29 CFR 1926)
Shipyard Employment (29 CFR 1915)
Marine Terminals (29 CFR 1917)
Safety and Health Regulations for Longshoring (29 CFR 1918)
Letters of Interpretation (supplementary guidance that clarifies the application of an established Agency policy or procedure)
NIOSH Recommended Exposure Limit (REL): 10 ppm, 10-minute ceiling
Concentration considered immediately dangerous to life and health (IDLH): 100 ppm
ACGIH® recommends a threshold limit value (TLV®) of 1 ppm as an 8-hour time weighted average (TWA) and a short-term exposure limit (STEL) of 5 ppm.
There are twenty-eight OSHA-approved State Plans, operating state-wide occupational safety and health programs. State Plans are required to have standards and enforcement programs that are at least as effective as OSHA's and may have different or more stringent requirements.
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