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Coke Oven Emissions

General Description

Synonyms: Coke oven emissions

OSHA IMIS code: 0725

CAS number: None

Monitoring Methods used by OSHA

Primary Laboratory Sampling/Analytical Method:
  • pre-cleaned glass fiber filter (37 mm)
  • maximum volume: 960 L
  • maximum flow rate: 2.0 L/min
  • current analytical method: gravimetric & high performance liquid chromatography; HPLC/UV/FLU
  • method reference: OSHA 58 (fully validated)
  • sampling analytical error: 0.14
  • note: OSHA personnel can obtain pre-cleaned filters, vials, and Teflon-lined caps from the OSHA-Salt Lake Technical Center. Submit as a separate sample. If the filter is not overloaded, samples may be collected up to an 8-hour period. After sampling, filter must be transferred to vial with a Teflon-lined cap. Sample must be protected from direct sunlight.
Bulk Method:
  • Limit the amount of bulk submitted to 1 g or 1 mL

Column: C18 Mobile Phase; (85:15) acetonitrile:water; Detector Wavelength: 254nm

Exposure Limits and Health Effects (Updated September 6, 2012)

Standard Set By Exposure Limit Health Effect Codes -- Health Effects and Target Organs
OSHA PEL - General Industry
See 29 CFR 1910.1000 Table Z-1
150 μg/m3 (benzene-soluble fraction) TWA HE1 -- cancer
OSHA PEL - Construction Industry Not established  
OSHA PEL - Shipyard Employment Not established  

0.2 mg/m3(200 μg/m3) (benzene-soluble fraction) TWA 

HE1 -- cancer of the respiratory tract, kidney, bladder, and skin
ACGIH TLV® Not established  
CAL/OSHA PELs 0.15 mg/m3 (150 μg/m3)  

Carcinogenic classification:

EPA Inhalation Reference Concentration (RfC): Not established

ATSDR Inhalation Minimal Risk Levels (MRLs): Not established

NIOSH IDLH concentration: Not established

Notes on other potential health effects and hazards:

  1. Urinary 2-naphthol serves as a proportional biomarker for polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), which are found in coke oven emissions. Workers with higher levels of exposure to PAHs also had higher levels of urinary 2-naphthol (Jeng et al. 2011).
  2. Workers exposed to coke oven emissions have an increased risk of liver dysfunction. This effect is compounded in workers with elevated body mass indices and with hepatitis virus infection. (Hu et al. 2010).
  3. Workers exposed to greater air concentrations of coke oven emissions had increased oxidatively damaged DNA products and mutagenicity of urine. Higher exposures also increase DNA methylation and urinary acute toxicity (Chao et al. 2008).
  4. Coke oven workers exposed to coke oven emissions have an increased risk of chronic cough/phlegm and chronic obtrusive pulmonary diseases. This risk is compounded further if the worker smokes (Hu et al. 2006).

Partial reference list:

  • Chao, MR., Wang, CJ., Wu, MT., Pan, CH., Kuo, CY., Yang, HJ., Chang, LW., and Hu, CW.: Repeated measurements of urinary methylated/oxidative DNA lesions, acute toxicity, and mutagenicity in coke oven workers. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 17(12):3381-3389, 2008.
  • Hu, Y., Chen, B., Yin, Z., Jia, L., Zhou, Y., and Jin, T.: Increased risk of chronic obstructive pulmonary diseases in coke oven workers - interaction between occupational exposure and smoking. Thorax. 61(4):290-295, 2006.
  • Hu, Y., Qian J., Jin L., and Lu, D.: Occupational coke oven emissions exposure and risk of abnormal liver function - modifications of body mass index and hepatitis virus infection. Occup Environ Med. 67(3): 159-165, 2010.
  • Jeng, H.A., Pan, C., Chang-Chien, G., Diawara, N., Peng, C., and Wu, M.: Repeated measurements for assessment of urinary 2-napthol levels in individuals exposed to polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons. Journal of Environmental Science and Health. 46(8): 865-873, 2011.
  • NIOSH: Criteria for a Recommended StandardOccupational Exposure to Coke Oven Emissions. 1973.

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