Non-Ferrous Founders' Society Safety & Health Training Program
Non-Ferrous Founders Society Safety & Health Training Program Hazard Communication/GHS Training Program Section 7: HazCom/GHS and the Brass and Bronze Foundry 2015 All Rights Reserved HazCom/GHS and the Brass and Bronze Foundry What are some of the hazards that exist in a brass and bronze foundry? What are some common manufacturing process/materials in the brass and bronze foundry, and what hazards can these processes/materials
present to the foundry worker? What are some of the Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) items that workers should wear in a brass and bronze foundry? Non-Ferrous Foundry Hazards Green Sand/No Bake Molding Cores Sand Molding Sand must be mixed with clay and water in a MULLER and then delivered to the molders
Can be manual or automated systems for feeding the sand systems If manually loaded, there is a potential exposure to dust from silica and bentonite clay that is added In automated systems, workers should not be exposed to these dusts Sand Molding Once water is added to the system, the amount of dust should be quite low
However, workers who clean out these system can generate excessive dust Dust Hazards Sand can break down into very small pieces or DUST These particles can become airborne and get into worker breathing zones Silica sand dust can cause lung damage when workers breathe it in at unsafe levels over time
Small Particles of Silica Permissible Exposure Limits (PEL) for 3 Types of Silica 3 types of Silica Crystalline Silica Cristobalite Tridymite The PEL for each type of silica are shown in table Z-3 to the left
......... 30 mg/m3 %SiO2+2 Silica: Crystalline Cristobalite: Use the value calculated from the count or mass formulae for quartz.
Tridymite: Use the value calculated from the formulae for quartz. Permissible Exposure Limits (PEL) for 3 Types of Silica Most brass/bronze foundry sand systems meet these PELs The temperature of the metal when poured is not high enough to dry out the sand so that dust becomes airborne Dust may be created when sand must be manually moved or handled, or when heavy equipment runs over sand
Dust allowed to accumulate can be released by wind, air or when the structure is shaken MELTING Most brass and bronze foundries buy INGOTS with guaranteed chemistry Some foundries will buy and melt SCRAP metal Scrap will come in various sizes and may have a range of metal content MELTING
Most foundries will return defective castings to the melting process Metal removed from the casting may also be returned for remelt Furnaces can be large or small The source of energy can be electricity, natural gas, propane or oil MELTING When copper alloys are
melted, the process can create metal FUMES Engineering controls (ventilation hoods) are used to keep the amount of fume at safe levels Work practices may also be used BURNS are always a danger when working near hot metal
PPE must always be worn! Personal Protective Equipment Recommended minimum basic clothing requirements for any employee working near the melting and pouring areas are: 100% cotton socks and undergarments 100% cotton or wool outer garments For employees in a hazardous zone (near a furnace or ladle containing molten metal) additional specific clothing and PPE is recommended based on the conditions, such as: The temperatures, amount and type of molten metal in the furnace, ladle and/or mold The level of the metal and area of the body that could be impacted by a splash, runout, spark, flame or hot surface How close is the worker to molten metal and hot surfaces
Personal Protective Equipment DO LIST: DO NOT LIST: Do wear proper costs, jackets, aprons, Do Not wear Nomex* cape, sleeves, bibs leggings and/or chaps because all molten metals as needed tend to stick to the fabric Do wear pants or leggings that cover the Do Not wear polyester, top of the boot to prevent molten nylon and other manmade metal/sparks from entering the boot materials that can melt and Do wear spats or leggings that cover the readily ignite
lacings if laced boots are worn Do wear long pants, long sleeve shirts are recommended Do evaluate the need for spats, leggings and chaps for pouring operations Do wear clothing that does not trap molten metal/sparks Do wear any other PPE needed to protect body parts exposed to heat or metal Shakeout Once the metal is poured into the mold, it must cool and then be removed There should be no sand on
the surface with permanent mold, though the casting will be HOT! In a sand foundry, the sand mold is broken to remove the casting Potential hazard from small particles of silica released during shakeout Respirators If workers are exposed to airborne silica above the PEL,
engineering controls or other measures must be taken to reduce the amount of silica dust to a safe level Until these measures are put into place, or safe levels can not be achieved, RESPIRATORS must be worn by exposed workers Respirators are effective, if they are the RIGHT type of respirator and WORN and MAINTAINED properly If your company requires the use of respirators, a written program is needed along with training and fit testing Medical questionnaire must be completed for everyone in the program to be sure that the respirator can be safely worn
Other Potential Airborne Hazards from Mold and Core Making If molds or cores are made with CHEMICALLY BONDED SAND, the mixing and heating process can release gases and vapors that may be hazardous The Safety Data Sheet (SDS) will list chemicals that may be a problem either as ingredients, as a result of mixing two ingredients, or as a result of pouring hot metal into the mold and breaking down the chemicals in the mold/core One substance that may be released
is ISOCYANATES ISOCYANATES Some commonly used chemical binders used to hold sand together contain ISOCYANATES ISOCYANATES are chemical compounds that react with other chemicals to make a new chemical with new characteristics
In the foundry, we mix a RESIN and a CATALYST with sands to make a mold or core ISOCYANATES in some core making systems include Toluene Diisocyantes (TDI) or Methylene Biphenyl Isocyanate (MDI) If these chemicals are present in your foundry, they will be shown on the Safety Data Sheet (SDS) Workers exposed to these chemicals can develop ASTHMA ASTHMA People who never had asthma can
develop it due to workplace exposures to ISOCYANTES People with asthma may find that their condition gets worse due to workplace exposures to ISOCYANATES Some people can also become sensitized to the chemical Some ISOCYANATES (but not all) are classified as potential human carcinogens It is important to check the Safety Data Sheet (SDS) to see which Isocyanates may be present and WHAT actions should be taken if there is a potential hazard
FORMALDEHYDE One chemical that MAY be in some products used to bind sand together is FORMALDEHYDE If this chemical is present in the product or is created when used, the Safety Data Sheet (SDS) will show us! FORMALDEHYDE A colorless, strong
smelling gas A sensitizing agent Classified as a cancer hazard Eating or drinking FORMALDEHYDE can be fatal Long term exposure to low levels can cause asthma and skin irritation FORMALDEHYDE
If FORMALDEHYDE is present in the workplace, OHSA requires employers to identify all workers who may be exposed by doing AIR SAMPLING to see if exposures are above the PEL set to keep workers safe Formaldehyde Air Sampling Equipment FORMALDEHYDE
It tests show levels of FORMALDEHYDE are at or above the PEL, the company must use feasible engineering and work practice controls to reduce these levels The PEL for FORMALDEHYDE is 0.75 parts per million measured as an 8-hour Time Weighted Average (TWA) A second PEL in the form of a short-term exposure limit (STEL) of 2 parts per million which is the maximum exposure allowed during a 15-minute period FORMALDEHYDE All elements of a FORMALDEHYDE program must
be in a written document kept up to date by the foundry OSHA standard includes an ACTION LEVEL of 0.5 parts per million (8 hour TWA). Tests at or above this level require more air sampling, along with training and medical surveillance of the affected workers If control efforts cannot reduce exposure to acceptable levels, workers will be given respirators and other PPE needed, such as clothing, gloves, aprons, and chemical splash goggles PHENOL One other chemical commonly found in many core making processes is PHENOL
PHENOL has an odor that is unpleasant to many people At low levels, PHENOL may be irritating to the eyes, nose and throat At high concentrations, PHENOL can cause dermatitis or chemical burns PHENOL PHENOL is most often used in the core room in solid form The amount of PHENOL is usually quite small, but
the Safety Data Sheet will report if it is present and how much is used in the product Cleaning and Finishing Band saws may be used to separate castings from the gates and runners Excess metal may also be removed with hand held or stationary grinders Belt sanders may finish the surface of the casting Blast systems use abrasive
materials to produce the external finish on castings Cleaning and Finishing If any silica sand remains on the casting, it could become airborne and present the same hazards as in sand system operations The finishing/grinding processes may also remove very small particles of aluminum from the casting If the particles are small enough, they can become airborne and be breathed by workers Copper Copper is the main ingredient in
brass and bronze castings Copper is a naturally occurring metallic element and an essential nutrient Not enough copper in bodies can lead to anemia, osteoporosis and defects in connective tissue Too much copper in high dosages over a short period can cause temporary gastrointestinal distress such as nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain Copper Mammals (including humans)
have efficient mechanisms to regulate copper in the body This protects against chronic or lower exposures that occur over an extended time period However, at high enough levels, chronic overexposure to copper can damage the liver and kidneys Permissible Exposure Limits (PEL) for Copper Dusts and Fumes Copper has two exposure limits:
Dusts Fumes The PEL for Copper DUST is 1 mg/m3. The PEL for Copper Fume is 0.1 mg/m3 Zinc One of the most common elements in the Earths crust Bluish-white metal has many
uses, such as coating steel and as an alloying element in the foundry People with too little zinc can have a loss of appetite, decreased taste/smell and decreased immune function Essential for the proper development of the young Zinc Enters the body through ingestion (eating or drinking) or by breathing it into the lungs If workers breath in large
amounts of zinc, they can develop metal fume fever a flu like illness that lasts for a day or two with head ache, fever and chills as symptoms. Usually short term that reverses once exposure to zinc stops Permissible Exposure Limit (PEL) for Zinc is 5 mg/m3. Lead Present is SOME, but not all, Copper alloys One of the first metals used by humans; caused the first
recorded disease in a worker Used in most automobile batteries and as an alloy with other metals. Alloy in brass and bronze in varying amounts from less than 1% to over 10% Lead Enters the body through ingestion (eating or drinking) or by breathing it into the lungs Employers are required to protect workers from lead exposure by
OSHA The Permissible Exposure Limit (PEL) is 50 g/m3 of lead over an 8 hour time weighted average An Action Level has also been established at 30 g/m3, at which an employer must begin specific compliance activities Lead Program If you have LEAD in your foundry, a special LEAD PROGRAM will include:
Testing the air for lead Training employees who may be exposed Medical tests including periodic blood lead tests for some employees Special work clothing for exposed employees Special work rules in lead areas including no smoking, drinking, or eating in these areas and no dry sweeping of floors or surfaces that may have lead
on them Clean and contaminated areas for clothes worn into the plant and those worn in the work areas Respirators for areas above the Permissible Exposure Limit Rules to keep lead away from lunch rooms and to keep the lead from being taken home after work Engineering Controls to keep the amount of lead in the air to below the allowable levels Lead Chronic (Long Term) exposure to Lead can be associated with:
Poor kidney function High blood pressure Nervous system and neurobehavioral effects Cognitive dysfunction later in life Chronic exposure to Lead at higher levels have been found to cause: Damage to sperm/semen quality Lower reaction times
Attention deficit Lead Workers with high blood lead levels have shown symptoms such as headache, fatigue, sleep disturbance, joint pain, myalgia, anorexia, and constipation Workers with VERY high blood lead levels can suffer from conditions including anemia, peripheral neuropathy, interstitial kidney fibrosis, severe abdominal cramping,
convulsions, coma and death Lead The use of respirators, proper washing of hands and face before eating, smoking or drinking and following ALL of the Lead Program Rules is important! These measures PROTECT workers from lead exposure The medical surveillance program & blood testing help to be sure these measures are protecting people from the
effects of LEAD Cadmium and Beryllium Used in some foundries to make special castings Not used is most nonferrous foundries Special rules and programs are required by OSHA for these metals Will be listed on Safety Data Sheets Beryllium Lightweight, hard metal found in nature Good conductor of electricity
and heat and is non-magnetic Applications include jet brake pads, aerospace components, ceramic manufacturing, semiconductors, jet engine blades, rocket covers, atomic energy applications, dental alloys, sporting goods and much more! Beryllium OSHA Permissible Exposure Limit (PEL) for Beryllium is:
2 g/m3 as an 8-hour TWA A ceiling of 5 g/m3 not to be exceeded for more than 30 minutes a time 25 g/m3 as a peak exposure limit never to be exceeded Chronic Beryllium Disease (CBD) Primarily affects the lungs Very slow onset Symptoms include
Unexplained cough Shortness of breath Fatigue Weight loss/loss of appetite Fever Night Sweats Workers may have the disease for a long time without knowing it Only develops in workers who have
become SENSITIZED to Beryllium Acute Beryllium Disease (ABD) Usually has a quick onset Symptoms resemble pneumonia or bronchitis Believed to occur as a result of exposures well above the OSHA Permissible Exposure Limit This form of beryllium disease in now reported to be rare Beryllium Hazards Workers exposed to beryllium
have higher than normal risks of lung cancer Exposure to Beryllium can cause lung cancer in humans Contact with skin can also present a hazard Skin disease, including poor wound healing and a rash or wartlike bumps, can occur as a result of contact with Beryllium dust Cadmium Soft, malleable, bluish white metal found in zinc ores Most Cadmium today is obtained from zinc byproducts
and recovered from spent nickel-cadmium batteries Used as a paint pigment in early 1800s An important metal in the production of rechargeable batteries, alloys, coatings, solar cells, plastic stabilizers, and pigments Cadmium Cadmium and its compounds are HIGHLY toxic Exposure to Cadmium is known to cause cancer
Targets the bodys cardiovascular, renal, gastrointestinal, neurological, reproductive and respiratory systems OSHA has a Cadmium standard that includes foundries (29CFR1910.1027) Cadmium Program If you have CADMIUM in your foundry, a special CADMIUM PROGRAM will include:
Testing the air for Cadmium Training employees who may be exposed Medical tests including periodic tests for some employees Special work clothing for exposed employees Special work rules in Cadmium areas including no smoking, drinking, or eating in these areas and no dry sweeping of floors or surfaces that may
have Cadmium on them Clean and contaminated areas for clothes worn into the plant and those worn in the work areas Respirators for areas above the Permissible Exposure Limit Rules to keep Cadmium away from lunch rooms and to keep the Cadmium from being taken home after work Engineering Controls to keep the amount of Cadmium in the air to below the allowable levels Be Informed! The place where YOU work may not have all of these metals or chemicals in your department The way we know WHAT
we work with and HOW it can affect us begins with reading and understanding the SAFETY DATA SHEET and product LABELS! Work Safely! We can safely make the Brass and Bronze castings that are so important to daily life by understanding the chemicals and processes we use in
the foundry! Acknowledgements This material was produced under grant number SH-26318-SH4 from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, U.S. Department of Labor. It does not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the U.S. Department of Labor, nor does mention of trade names, commercial products, or organizations imply endorsement by the U.S. Government Non-Ferrous Founders Society Safety & Health Training Program For further information about this or other training modules: Non-Ferrous Founders Society
1480 Renaissance Drive, Suite 310 Park Ridge, IL 60068 847/299-0950 http://www.nffs.org
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