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Air Contaminants
National Summary

This topic covers air contaminants, including mold, fiberglass, silica, carbon monoxide, radon, and many other substances that have a Permissible Exposure Limit (PEL).

Employers whose workers are exposed to air contaminants must comply with PELs, ceiling limits, and 8-hour time-weighted averages for the relevant substance. Regulated air contaminants are listed in three tables in 29 CFR 1910 Subpart Z.

For related resources and training materials, refer to the following topics:


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Directives 10/07/1991 - L 2-2.52 CH-1 - Page Changes to OSHA Instruction CPL 2-2.52 07/22/2003National
Directives 10/16/1980 - STD 1-5.16 - Venting LP-Gas to the Atmosphere 07/16/2003National
Violations 2009 Violation Summary for Air Contaminants - General Industry  National
Violations 2011 Violation Summary for Air Contaminants - General Industry  National
Regulations 29 CFR § 1910.1000 Air contaminants  National
Regulations 29 CFR § 1910.19 Special provisions for air contaminants  National
Safety Slogans Air Contaminants  National
Quizzes Air Contaminants (Word)  National
Meetings Air Contaminants (Word)  National
Interpretations Air monitoring results, citations, and employee exposure records.[1910.1020(e)(1)(i); 1910.1020(c)(5); 1910.1020(c)(6); 1910.1020(g)(1)] 03/27/2002National
Interpretations All exterior openings/doors of temporary labor housing must be screened. 09/22/1998National
Interpretations Appropriate air sampling methods for copper and zinc oxide. 04/01/1999National
Interpretations Calculation methods used under the air contaminants standard for extended work shifts. 01/23/1997National
Case Studies Can a Worker Sue His Employer for Exposure to Mold?  National
Puzzles Carbon Monoxide (PDF)  National
Training Tips Carbon Monoxide Can Be a Killer  National
Handouts Carbon Monoxide Exposure (PDF)  National
Quizzes Carbon Monoxide Exposure (PDF)  National
Trainer's Outlines Carbon Monoxide Exposure (PDF) [Safety Audit Checklists]  National
Guidance Documents Carbon Monoxide Fact Sheet  National
Interpretations Carbon Monoxide or High Temperature Alarm Requirement for Portable Breathing Air Compressors. 07/05/1994National
Quizzes Carbon Monoxide Safety (PDF)  National
Handouts Carbon Monoxide Safety (PDF)  National
Trainer's Outlines Carbon Monoxide Safety (PDF) [OSHA Training System] (long outline)  National
Interpretations Compliance with NFPA 30-2000 ventilation requirements is considered a deminimus violation. 08/27/2001National
Interpretations Correct placement of air sampling cassettes on abrasive blasters. 01/04/1999National
Interpretations Correct placement of air sampling cassettes on employees performing welding operations. 02/03/1999National
Handouts Dangers of Anthrax (PDF)  National
Quizzes Dangers of Anthrax (PDF)  National
Trainer's Outlines Dangers of Anthrax (PDF) [OSHA Training System] (long outline)  National
Interpretations Determination of airborne concentrations of methylene chloride; protection of employees covered by 1910.1052.[1910.1052; 1910.1052(k); 1910.1200] 05/12/2003National
Guidance Documents Diacetyl and Substitutes (OSHA Worker Alert)  National
Interpretations Employees in a cotton yarn manufacturing plant who voluntarily wear cloth over their mouths and noses to prevent lint from sticking to their skin.[1910.134] 03/09/1995National
Guidance Documents Ethylene Oxide Fact Sheet  National
Interpretations Exposure monitoring requirements under the coke oven emissions standard. 12/07/1999National
Quizzes Fiberglass and Synthetic Vitreous Fibers (PDF)  National
Handouts Fiberglass and Synthetic Vitreous Fibers (PDF)  National
Quizzes Fiberglass and Synthetic Vitreous Fibers (PDF) - Spanish  National
Handouts Fiberglass and Synthetic Vitreous Fibers (PDF) - Spanish  National
Trainer's Outlines Fiberglass and Synthetic Vitreous Fibers (PDF) [7-Minute Safety Trainer] (short outline)  National
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