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Job tasks as determinants of thoracic aerosol exposure in the cement production industry

Background: The aims of this study were to identify important determinants and investigate the variance components of thoracic aerosol exposure for the workers in the production departments of European cement plants. Methods: Personal thoracic aerosol measurements and questionnaire information (Notø et al., 2015) were the basis for this study. Determinants categorized in three levels were selected to describe the exposure relationships separately for the job types production, cleaning, maintenance, foreman, administration, laboratory, and other jobs by linear mixed models. The influence of plant and job determinants on variance components were explored separately and also combined in full models (plant&job) against models with no determinants (null). The best mixed models (best) describing the exposure for each job type were selected by the lowest Akaike information criterion (AIC; Akaike, 1974) after running all possible combination of the determinants. Results: Tasks that significantly increased the thoracic aerosol exposure above the mean level for production workers were: packing and shipping, raw meal, cement and filter cleaning, and de-clogging of the cyclones. For maintenance workers, time spent with welding and dismantling before repair work increased the exposure while time with electrical maintenance and oiling decreased the exposure. Administration work decreased the exposure among foremen. A...

Annals of Work Exposures and Health 62(1): 88–100
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