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Identifying and Mitigating Exposure Risks to Phosphine and Other Chemicals in the Workplace

Clark Seif Clark provides industrial hygiene testing, consulting and training services to identify and mitigate occupational exposure risks to phosphine and other chemical and biological hazards.

Chatsworth, CA – WEBWIRE

Early symptoms of acute phosphine intoxication include pain in the diaphragm, nausea, vomiting, excitement and a phosphorus smell on the breath.

Phosphine is described by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) as a colorless, flammable and explosive gas at room temperature. Small amounts occur naturally in the environment and it is also made for use in a number of industries.
The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) reports that phosphine is used in the semiconductor and plastics industries, in the production of a flame retardant, and as a pesticide in stored grain. NIOSH also states it is also used as a pesticide (insects and rodents) in stored tobacco and lists examples of some workers potentially at risk of being exposed to phosphine. They include:

  • Factory workers that make electronics
  • Workers in plants that make rat poison
  • Pest control workers who use it for the control of rats

Early symptoms of acute phosphine intoxication include pain in the diaphragm, nausea, vomiting, excitement and a phosphorus smell on the breath. Higher levels can cause weakness, bronchitis, pulmonary edema, shortness of breath, convulsions and death. Some effects, such as pulmonary edema, convulsions and liver injury, may appear or continue to be present days after exposure. Long-term exposure to very low levels of phosphine can result in anemia, bronchitis, gastrointestinal effects, and visual, speech and motor problems.
“To safeguard workers, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has set a Permissible Exposure Limit (PEL) and NIOSH has a Recommended Exposure Limit (REL) for phosphine,” said Zahid Iqbal, MPH, CIH and Technical Director at Clark Seif Clark (CSC). “At CSC, our industrial hygiene professionals are here to help companies protect workers and maintain regulatory compliance through testing, monitoring, consulting and training services for exposure risks associated with phosphine and other hazards in the workplace.”
CSC also recently sponsored an educational video about phosphine and potential occupational exposure risks that can be seen at:
To learn more about this or other industrial hygiene, indoor air quality, environmental, health and safety services, please visit, email or call (800) 807-1118. 
About Clark Seif Clark
CSC was established in 1989 to help clients in both public and private sectors address indoor air quality, occupational, environmental, and health and safety (EH&S) issues. CSC is a leading provider of these services with multiple offices along the western seaboard and southwest. The company believes in science-based protocols and has a strong background in engineering, making them the preferred environmental consultants to industrial clients, healthcare facilities, architects, schools, builders, contractors, developers and real estate professionals.

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 Industrial Hygiene
 Occupational Health
 Occupational Safety

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