Thirty-seven air samplings in different working areas of two foundry industries were collected to assess polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) levels. The average PAH level inside Foundry A was 19.56μg/m3, which was higher than that in Foundry B (8.26μg/m3), whereas for the benzo[a]pyrene toxic equivalent (BaPeq) level (38.81ng/m3 vs. 46.52ng/m3). A higher PAH level was found for big moulding process than for the small one, and the chemical binder in the different size moulds was hypothesized to be the main cause. The higher PAH levels were found in the painting area (95.51μg/m3), pouring area (18.42μg/m3), and inside the office (16.48μg/m3); as well as the higher BaPeq level was in the painting area (152.3ng/m3), and the furnace for melting iron (96.9ng/m3). The gas phase (over 90%) was the major contributor of total PAHs in the manufacturing areas. Moreover, health risk assessment of PAHs exposure showed that lung cancer risks were 9.06×10-4 and 1.09×10-3 in Foundries A and B, respectively. This study suggests that the workers shall use appropriate respiratory masks in painting, melting, and pouring areas to prevent their occupational exposure to PAHs.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Environmental Engineering
- Environmental Chemistry
- Waste Management and Disposal
- Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis