Huntington Beach, CA, Novmeber 27, 2023
Ethylene glycol is described by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) as a colorless, syrupy liquid. The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) reports that ethylene glycol is a synthetic liquid substance that absorbs water, is odorless, and has a sweet taste, although it is poisonous.
The chemical compound is used to make antifreeze and de-icing solutions for airplanes and other forms of transportation. It is used in hydraulic brake fluids and inks used in stamp pads, ballpoint pens and print shops. Ethylene glycol can be found in some air-conditioning systems and geothermal heating/cooling systems, and it is also an important precursor to polyester fibers and resins.
It is used in many industries and NIOSH lists some examples of workers at potential risk of exposure, including:
- Factory workers involved in the manufacture of polyester
- Workers who use certain solvents
- Employees working with heating and cooling systems
- Factory workers exposed to certain manufacturing processes
“There are health concerns for workers that could be exposed to ethylene glycol,” said Michael Chapman, Laboratory Manager at LA Testing’s Huntington Beach facility. “NIOSH warns that exposure can harm the eyes, skin, kidneys, and respiratory system. If swallowed it can cause death. ATSDR reports exposure to large amounts of ethylene glycol can damage the kidneys, nervous system, lungs, and heart. To protect workers, the American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH) has set a Threshold Limit Value (TLV) for ethylene glycol and Cal/OSHA also has its own Permissible Exposure Limit-Ceiling (PEL-C). Back in 2015, the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) added it to the Prop 65 list as known to cause reproductive toxicity.”
California businesses that could expose workers to ethylene glycol or other chemicals can turn to the industrial hygiene and environmental testing professionals at LA Testing. They offer laboratory services, sampling supplies, and personal protective equipment to assess and mitigate occupational exposure risks. These services protect workers and help companies comply with health and safety regulations. LA Testing has even sponsored an educational video about ethylene glycol and potential occupational exposure risks that can be seen at: https://youtu.be/KPGnCIMNoYs
To learn more about this or other industrial hygiene, environmental, health and safety testing resources, please visit www.LATesting.com, email info@LATesting.com or call (800) 755-1794.
About LA Testing
LA Testing is California’s leading laboratory for environmental and indoor air quality testing of asbestos, mold, bacteria, lead, VOCs, formaldehyde, soot, char, ash and smoke damage, particulates and other chemicals. In addition, LA Testing offers a full range of air sampling and investigative equipment to professionals and the general public. LA Testing maintains an extensive list of accreditations including: AIHA LAP LLC., AIHA ELLAP, AIHA EMLAP and AIHA IHLAP, CDC ELITE, NVLAP, State of California, State of Hawaii Department of Health and other states. LA Testing, along with the EMSL Analytical, Inc. network, has multiple laboratories throughout California including South Pasadena, Huntington Beach, San Leandro and San Diego.