Arsenic

Chapter 296-848, WAC

Effective Date: 06/01/07

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WAC 296-848-100

Scope

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This chapter applies to all occupational exposure to inorganic arsenic.

Definition

Definition:

Inorganic arsenic means elemental arsenic (As), copper aceto-arsenite, and inorganic compounds containing arsenic (measured as As), except arsine. Inorganic compounds don't contain the element carbon.

Exposure is the contact an employee has with inorganic arsenic, whether or not protection is provided by respirators or other personal protective equipment (PPE). Exposure can occur through various routes of entry such as inhalation, ingestion, skin contact, or skin absorption.

Helpful Tool

Helpful Tool:

Arsenic contamination in soil; information and guidance for employers.

  • Use this tool if you have employees who work with soil. It will help you find out if this rule is applicable to your employee's exposure to soil.
Exemption

Exemption:

  • This chapter doesn't apply to any of the following:
    • - Exposures during agricultural operations.
    • - Pesticide applications, including the treatment of wood with preservatives.
    • - Use of wood treated with inorganic arsenic.
    • - Arsine, a gas identified by Chemical Abstract Service (CAS) Registry No. 7784-42-1.
    • - Inorganic arsenic present in a form and handled in such a way that airborne exposures could not occur. For example, inorganic arsenic present in glass is fused in the material. Due to the fused form, airborne exposure can't occur when the glass is scored and subsequently broken.

All requirements in this chapter won't apply to every workplace with an occupational exposure. The following steps will show you which requirements apply to your workplace.

Step 1: Follow requirements in the basic rules sections,
WAC 296-848-20010 through 296-848-20090.

    • This includes completing an exposure evaluation, as specified in Exposure evaluations, WAC 296-848-20060, to:
      • - Obtain employee eight-hour exposure monitoring results of airborne inorganic arsenic;
        and
      • - Determine if employee exposure monitoring results are above, at, or below these values:
          • Eight-hour time-weighted average (TWA8) 10 micrograms per cubic meter (µg/m3).
          • Eight-hour action level (AL)
            5 µg/m3.

Step 2: Use employee exposure monitoring results from Step 1 and follow Table 1 to find out which additional sections of this chapter apply to your workplace.

Table 1

Sections That Apply To Your Workplace

If: Then continue to follow the Basic Rules, and these additional requirements:
  • Employee exposure monitoring results are above the TWA8
  • Employee exposure monitoring results are:

    - At or below the TWA8;
    and
    - At or above AL
  • Employee exposure monitoring results are below the AL;
    and
  • Eye or skin irritation from exposure to inorganic arsenic can't occur
  • No additional requirements apply if exposures remain stable.
  • Employees could experience eye or skin irritation from exposure to inorganic arsenic.

 

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