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Chemical Sampling Information (CSI)
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General Description

Synonyms: Chloroethene; Chloroethylene; Ethylene monochloride; Monochloroethene; Monochloroethylene; VC; Vinyl chloride monomer (VCM)

OSHA IMIS Code Number: 2580

Chemical Abstracts Service (CAS) Registry Number: 75-01-4

NIOSH Registry of Toxic Effects of Chemical Substances (RTECS) Identification Number: KU9625000

Department of Transportation Regulation Number (49 CFR 172.101) and Guide: 1086 116P

NIOSH Pocket Guide to Chemical Hazards, Vinyl chloride: chemical description, physical properties, potentially hazardous incompatibilities, and more

Exposure Limits

OSHA Permissible Exposure Limit (PEL):

General Industry: 29 CFR 1910.1017 - Vinyl chloride - 1 ppm TWA; 0.5 ppm Action Level

Construction Industry: 29 CFR 1926.1117 - Vinyl chloride requirements identical to 1910.1017

Maritime: 29 CFR 1915.1017 - Vinyl chloride requirements identical to 1910.1017

American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH) Threshold Limit Value (TLV): 1 ppm TWA; Appendix A1 - Confirmed Human Carcinogen

National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Recommended Exposure Limit (REL): Appendix A - NIOSH Potential Occupational Carcinogens

Health Factors

Carcinogenic Classification:

National Toxicology Program (NTP) carcinogenic classification: Known to be a human carcinogen [237 KB PDF, 6 pages]

International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC): Group 1, carcinogenic to humans [732 KB PDF, 28 pages]

Potential Symptoms: Weakness, dizziness, drowsiness; headache, weight loss; abdominal pain, GI bleeding; liver enlargement, fibrosis, cirrhosis; spleen enlargement; pallor or cyanosis of extremities; eye redness, pain; frostbite (on contact with liquid); (carcinogenic)

Health Effects: Liver cancer-Angiosarcoma (HE1); Irritation-Eyes, Nose, Throat, Skin-Mild (HE16); Explosive, Flammable (HE18)

Affected Organs: Liver, CNS, blood, respiratory system, lymphatic system


  1. At low exposure levels, vinyl chloride is metabolized via alcohol dehydrogenase to monochloroacetic acid (excreted in urine).
  2. At higher levels, it is metabolized by CYP2E1 to intermediate reactive metabolites, chloroethylene oxide and chloroacetaldehyde, which can form adducts with DNA.
  3. Susceptibility to liver damage may be related to genetic differences in metabolizing enzymes.

Date Last Revised: 08/05/2003

Literature Basis:

  • International Chemical Safety Cards (WHO/IPCC/ILO): Vinyl chloride.
  • Lewis, R.: Vinyl chloride and polyvinyl chloride. Occup. Med. 14(4): 719-741, 1999.
  • Huang, C.Y., Huang, K.L., Cheng, T.J., Wang, J.D. and Hsieh, L.L.: The GST T1 and CYP2E1 genotypes are possible factors causing vinyl chloride induced abnormal liver function. Arch. Toxicol. 71(8): 482-488, 1997.
  • Li, Y., Marion, M.J., Ho, R., Cheng, T.J., Coulibaly, D., Rosal, R. and Brandt-Rauf, P.W.: Polymorphisms for vinyl chloride metabolism in French vinyl chloride workers. Int. J. Occup. Med. Environ. Health 16(1): 55-59, 2003.
Monitoring Methods used by OSHA

Laboratory Sampling/Analytical Method:

  • sampling media: Carbosieve S-III (130/65 mg sections, 60/80 mesh)
    analytical solvent: 99:1 (v/v) Carbon Disulfide/Dimethylformamide
    maximum volume: 3 Liters
    maximum flow rate: 0.05 L/min (TWA & STEL)
    current analytical method: Gas Chromatography; GC/FID
    method reference: OSHA Manual of Analytical Methods (OSHA 75)
    method classification: Fully Validated
    note: Submit as a separate sample. Refrigerate samples and analyze as soon as possible.

On-Site Sampling Techniques/Methods:

  • device: Detector Tube
    manufacturer: Gastec
    model/type: 131La
    sampling information: 0.5 to 4 strokes
    upper measurement limit: 54 ppm
    detection limit: 0.05 ppm
    overall uncertainty: 16% for 1 to 6 ppm, 8% for 6 to 20 ppm
    method reference: on-site air secondary (SEI Certified)

  • device: Detector Tube
    manufacturer: Matheson-Kitagawa
    model/type: 8014-132SA
    sampling information: follow manufacturer's instructions
    upper measurement limit: 1%
    detection limit: approximately 0.05%
    overall uncertainty: unknown
    method reference: on-site air secondary (SEI Certified)

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