Monday, November 11, 2013

NIOSH Issues Recommendations on Nanomaterial Exposure

NIOSH's new document "Current Strategies for Engineering Controls in Nanomaterial Production & Downstream Handling Processes," contains new agency recommendations for controlling worker exposure to engineered nanomaterials during use and manufacturing of such materials. NIOSH reports that the new recommendations stem from technologies used in various industries that use nanomaterials and from control methods that have been proven effective in reducing occupational exposures in other industries.

NIOSH Director John Howard says, "These recommendations represent the kind of science-based guidance that our partners have requested as a vital component for supporting the safe growth of nanotechnology and U.S. leadership in the global market." The agency reports that engineering controls are favored over administrative and/or PPE for lowering exposure because they remove the hazard at the source before it comes into contact with the worker. In addition, the recommendations fill a void for science-based guidance that people can apply now, while research continues.