Hydrocarbon exposures at petroleum bulk terminals and agencies.
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Occupational exposures to the 55 hydrocarbon components of gasoline and petroleum products were measured at the bulk terminals and agencies of six Ontario petroleum companies during the summer of 1986. A total of 82 long-term (full-shift) and 111 short-term personal samples were taken over 3 months. The data, expressed as concentrations in milligrams per cubic meter, were highly variable and appeared to fit the lognormal distribution well. Full-shift exposures of bulk terminal drivers, agency drivers, and plantmen to total hydrocarbons (THC), computed as an n-hexane equivalent, and other hydrocarbon components for which exposure limits exist can be expected to exceed their respective 1986-1987 threshold limit value-time-weighted average (TLV-TWA) no greater than 1% of the time on the basis of the lognormal model. The short-term THC exposures of agency truck drivers can be expected to exceed the 1986-1987 TLV-short-term exposure limits about 7% of the time while top-loading and more than 17% while off-loading. For benzene, the short-term exceedance percentages are 1% and 4% for top- and off-loading operations, respectively. For long-term benzene exposures, up to 69% of the assessments can be expected to exceed the 1990-1991 proposed TLV-TWA of 0.3 mg/m3 (0.1 ppm). The full-shift hydrocarbon exposures of agency drivers were significantly higher than those for bulk terminal drivers. At the bulk terminals, the short-term hydrocarbon exposures during top-loading were significantly higher than during bottom-loading.
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