BRIEF COMMUNICATION
EXPOSURE ASSESSMENT OF AIRBORNE CONTAMINANTS IN THE INDOOR ENVIRONMENT OF IRISH SWINE FARMS
 
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1
Department of Experimental Physics, National University of Ireland, Galway, Ireland
2
Department of Health Promotion, National University of Ireland, Galway, Ireland
3
Department of Microbiology, National University of Ireland, Galway, Ireland
CORRESPONDING AUTHOR
Patricia E. Mc Donnell   

Room 203, Physics Department, National University of Ireland, Galway, Newcastle Road, Galway City, Ireland
 
Ann Agric Environ Med. 2008;15(2):323–326
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ABSTRACT
Agricultural workers have higher rates of long-term sick leave associated with respiratory disease than any other worker groups. There is currently no published data on the extent to which Irish agricultural workers are exposed to occupational respiratory hazards. This investigation focused on Irish swine farm workers in concentrated animal feeding operations and measured their occupational exposure to various respiratory hazards. Swine workers were found to be exposed to high concentrations of inhalable (0.25–7.6 mg/m3) and respirable (0.01–3.4 mg/m3) swine dust and airborne endotoxin (<166, 660 EU/m3). 8 hour Time Weighted Average ammonia and peak carbon dioxide exposures ranged from 0.01–3 ppm and 430–4780 ppm, respectively. Results of this study suggest that Irish swine confinement workers have a potential risk of developing work-associated respiratory disease.
eISSN:1898-2263
ISSN:1232-1966