Sunday, September 28, 2008

Synthetic Mineral Fibers - Fiberglass Hazards

As per OSHA - Synthetic mineral fibers are fibrous inorganic substances made primarily from rock, clay, slag, or glass. These fibers are classified into three general groups: fiberglass (glasswool and glass filament), mineral wool (rockwool and slagwool), and refractory ceramic fibers (RCF). There are more than 225,000 workers in the US exposed to synthetic mineral fibers in manufacturing and end-use applications.

There is insufficient evidence that synthetic mineral fibers cause respiratory disease in humans. Results from animal experiments have led to conservative classifications of certain synthetic mineral fibers as possible human carcinogens. Specifically, insulation glass wool, continuous glass filament, rock (stone) wool, and slag wool are not classifiable as to their carcinogenicity to humans. The following resources aid in recognizing synthetic mineral fiber hazards in the workplace.

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