Diesel engine emissions: a status report

In the Netherlands diesel engine emissions (DEE) are classified as carcinogenic and employers are consequently obliged to take due steps to eliminate or minimise them. If technological substitution is unfeasible, employee exposure to DEE must be reduced as far as possible through measures framed within an occupational hygiene strategy, as prescribed under sections 4.17 and 4.18 of the Decree on Working Conditions. This report reviews the current status of measures to eliminate and control DEE in four occupational settings: docksides, vehicle filling stations, domestic refuse collection and con-struction sites. In the latter two cases, a limited number of practical measurements were also carried out to assess exposure levels and the impact of substitution and control measures. It was demonstrated that refuse collectors operating gas-fuelled refuse vehicles or diesel-fuelled vehicles with a particle trap are exposed to about 50% lower DEE than those operating today�s diesel vehicles. Based on these results it was calculated that, in this occupational situation, particle traps and gas-fuelled vehicles can achieve a significant reduction of some 30% in the additional risk of lung cancer.


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