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Permissible Exposure Limits
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This topic covers Permissible Exposure Limits (PELs), which are numeric standards that determine how long a worker may be exposed in the workplace to a threshold amount of an airborne contaminant without adverse health effects.

OSHA has developed PELs for various forms of approximately 300 chemical substances. To achieve compliance, a facility must determine and implement administrative and engineering controls for chemical exposure when feasible and require the use of personal protective equipment (PPE) and other protective measures when necessary. PELs (including exposure time and concentration levels) for regulated substances are given in Tables Z-1, Z-2, and Z-3 in 29 CFR 1910.1000 Subpart Z.

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

Applies to News & White Papers
TypeTitleDateState
Proposed Rules 29 CFR 1910, 1915, and 1926 - Occupational Exposure to Crystalline Silica; Extension of Comment Period 01/29/2014National
Regulations 29 CFR 1910.1000 Air Contaminants Z Tables  National
Interpretations Application of OSHA PEL for nitric oxide as 8-hr TWA to pregnant employees. 05/19/2009National
Questions & Answers Can you please advise and provide additional resources for the request to look at an H2S policy? This policy needs to be added into our Safety Manual to perform work as a contractor at a host’s site. It is a requirement by the host. 05/19/2016National
Interpretations Clarification of sampling and testing protocol for determining employee exposure to airborne contaminants [1910.1200; 1910.1048; 1910.1048(c)(2)] 11/22/2011National
Forms Limits for Air Contaminants Tables and Recommended PEL Standards Form  National
Interpretations OSHA's regulations for chemicals used in the workplace, and in particular, glutaraldehyde [1910.1000; 1910.1200] 05/15/1997National
Regulatory Analysis Permissible Exposure Limits  National
Interpretations Permissible Exposure Limits for Nuisance dust. 05/15/1997National
Interpretations Request for a list of all OSHA-regulated air contaminants. 03/22/1995National
Questions & Answers We have three questions regarding what exposure limit standard should a facility follow for a specific chemical regulated by OSHA when OSHA has not assigned an occupational exposure limit (OEL) (i.e. a permissible exposure limit (PEL)) to that chemical. 09/16/2020National
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