As ozone generators become more popular, it is important to be aware of the proper ways to use them for your safety and the safety of those around you. Ozone generators can provide a number of benefits when used safely, but if not used correctly they can also create health risks. In this post, we will discuss ACGIH recommendations about how to safely use ozone generators.
It’s worth noting the poisonous nature of ozone, particularly at high doses. While ozone is a toxic gas, there are circumstances that minimize people working with it from immediately developing illnesses. Toxicity is determined by concentration and duration of exposure. A threshold of less than 0.2 mg.m-3 can be tolerated for extended periods of time, 2 mg.m-3 (1 ppm) may be sustained for 8 minutes, and up to 8 mg.m-3 (4 ppm) might be endured for one minute without causing coughing, watering eyes, or nose discomfort.
What is ACGIH?
The American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH) is a professional organization of industrial hygienists and other associated professionals based in Cincinnati, Ohio. OSHA is a professional association dedicated to the protection of employee health. OSHA is a federal agency that governs workplace safety, while the ACGIH is a scientific body that focuses on occupational and environmental health concerns.
ACGIH Recommendations on Using Ozone
It is important to note that ACGIH TLV’s are specifically designed for occupational exposures only.
The current ACGIH recommendations include a variety of 8-hour Threshold Limit Values (TLV) – Time Weighted Average (TWA) values based on workload.
The following are the recommended TLVs:
For heavy labor, 50 ppb; for moderate labor, 80 ppb; and for light labor, 100 ppb.
Exposures of less than 2 hours to heavy, moderate, or light work have an established TLV-TWA value of 200 ppb.
The TLV-TWAs are designed to safeguard employees who are exposed continuously for an 8 hour work day and a 40 hour work week. (Hazardous Substance Fact Sheet)
Ozone generators are a great way to improve your indoor air quality, but it’s important to understand how to safely use ozone generator. Make sure you follow the ACGIH recommendations and take precautions when using an ozone generator in your facility.
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