California's Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) added acrylonitrile to the list of chemicals known to the state to cause cancer for purposes of Proposition 65 back in 1987. The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) currently classifies acrylonitrile as possibly carcinogenic to humans.
Acrylonitrile is described by the Agency for Toxic Substances & Disease Registry (ATSDR) as a colorless, liquid, man-made chemical with a sharp, onion- or garlic-like odor that can be dissolved in water and evaporates quickly. The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) calls acrylonitrile a toxic, colorless to pale-yellow liquid, harmful to the eyes, skin, lungs, and nervous system. NIOSH also reports that it may cause cancer.
It is used in many industries to make various plastics, rubber, and chemicals. Some examples of workers NIOSH lists as potentially being at risk of exposure to acrylonitrile include:
- Workers involved in the manufacturing of acrylic fibers and plastics
- Employees who work in the coatings and adhesive industries
- Workers in the manufacture of other chemicals like adiponitrile
- Factory workers producing nitrile rubber products
“Workers can be exposed to acrylonitrile by inhalation, skin absorption, ingestion, and eye contact,” said Michael Chapman, Laboratory Manager at LA Testing's Huntington Beach facility. “There are NIOSH and OSHA occupational exposure limits for acrylonitrile. This is why LA Testing offers industrial hygiene laboratory testing services and sampling supplies to protect workers and to help keep companies and institutions in regulatory compliance.”
LA Testing has sponsored an educational video acrylonitrile and potential exposure risks that can be seen at: https://youtu.be/voyBr2z5Uts
About LA Testing
LA Testing is California's leading laboratory for indoor air quality testing of asbestos, mold, 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 public. LA Testing maintains an extensive list of accreditations including: AIHA-LAP, LLC (AIHA-LAP, LLC EMLAP, AIHA-LAP, LLC IHLAP, AIHA-LAP, LLC ELLAP), 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, San Diego, and Ontario.
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