Skip to Content

tag

Tag Archives: HTIW

post

Product Stewardship in Practice | Themed session at the BOHS 2017 conference

On Thursday 17 April 2017 ECFIA representatives had the opportunity to present the Product Stewardship Programme, the CARE Programme, and toxicological and epidemiological aspects of HTIW at the 2017 BOHS conference that took place in Harrogate. Read more »

post

2016 , a retrospective

With Christmas and the end of 2016 approaching we are taking the opportunity to look back on a very busy year. We will report on some of the most important and interesting things that have happened in 2016:

ECFIA

2016 has been a year of refocusing for ECFIA. We have come a long way since our founding in 1979, and even though there have been a lot of changes with regard to the regulatory situation and associated requirements, our main focus is still the same: to develop safe working practices and good occupational health and safety standards in the production and use of HITWs. We took the time to summarise some basic information on ECFIA and our Product Stewardship Programme in two brochures that can be downloaded here:

[Link to ECFIA image brochure]

[Link to Product Stewardship Programme brochure]

Practical guidance document series

Now containing 21 documents, the ‘CARE Guidance’ series has reached a status where there is a document on every relevant exposure control element or exposure scenario. They are written by occupational hygienists for users and give helpful information on how to put in place effective controls to minimise exposure to airborne fibres. If you need advice on, for example, local exhaust ventilation systems or maintenance and repair operations, you will find a specific document in the CARE Guidance library.

[Link to CARE Guidance library]

Candidate Listing of ASW/RCF

The European Commission has proposed an amendment of REACH Annex XIV (authorisation). The latter does not include ASW/RCF any longer and suggests postponing the decision on ASW/RCF till the most relevant regulatory approach has been found. MS representatives forming the “Art. 133 Committee” will decide on the proposal. A decision is likely to come out in the first quarter of 2017”.

[Link to the complete proposal]

Revision of the Carcinogens Directive

On 13 October 2016 the European Council reached agreement on its position on a revision of the Carcinogens Directive. In addition to the substances covered by the existing 2004 directive, it proposes to set exposure limits for a further 11 carcinogens, including a BOELV for ASW of 0,3 f/ml. This now opens the way for discussions on the directive between the Council and the European Parliament.

[Link to EC press release]

Scientific paper comparing intrapleural, intraperitoneal and inhalation test results

The paper published by Drummond G, Bevan B & Harrison P in Regulatory Toxicology and Pharmacology compares results from inhalation studies with those from intraperitoneal/intrapleural (IP) tests for a number of fibrous and particulate test materials, including ASW/RCF, with the objective of establishing how well IP studies predict the pathological responses observed in standard inhalation studies. For many materials, positive results in the intraperitoneal test were not reflected by positive inhalation results. In addition, it was found that if a material tested negative in the intraperitoneal test it was never positive in inhalation tests. These findings led to the conclusion that the IP test can be used to exonerate a dust or fibre but should not be used to positively determine that a dust or fibre is carcinogenic by inhalation.

Scientific paper on threshold vs. non-threshold carcinogens

Recently, a paper on threshold vs. non-threshold carcinogens (co-authored by our consultant toxicologist, Professor Paul Harrison) was submitted for publication in Regulatory Toxicology and Pharmacology (expected to be published in early 2017). This paper explains the importance of determining the threshold or non-threshold nature of a carcinogen. At present, some regulatory bodies – including those that set occupational exposure limit values – do not make this distinction, resulting in inappropriate regulation of carcinogens that have a safe level of exposure. ASW/RCF is a prime example of such a substance.

post

ECFIA brochure

To inform interested stakeholders about ECFIA, a new brochure has been produced which includes information on the types of HTIW and where they are used, the CARE and PSP programmes, as well as on toxicological and scientific studies related to HTIW.

The brochure is electronically available as a pdf-file and also in printed format which can be ordered by contacting us at: communication@ecfia.eu

post

“ECFIA Action”: Passive exposure to HTIW

Recognising the need to quantify passive exposure to fibrous dust during worker activities, ECFIA has undertaken further investigations to examine situations where individuals are working in areas where HTIW products are contained within a closed process, or HTIW products are installed but are not being worked on. Read more »

post

Exposure reduction through use of alternative product forms and processes

ECFIA´s industrial hygienists have once again pooled their knowledge on best practices and compiled a guidance document on exposure reduction through use of alternative product forms and processes. Read more »

post

Paper on Crystalline Silica in after-service amorphous HTIW

When amorphous HTIW products are installed and used in high temperature applications, such as industrial furnaces, at least one face (the hot face) may be exposed to conditions causing the fibres to partially devitrify. Depending on the chemical composition of the fibres and the time and temperature to which the materials are exposed, different stable crystalline phases may form. Read more »

post

Biopersistence

Biopersistence is the characteristic of a fibre to persist in the lung, involving or implying resistance to both dissolution and mechanical breakage. Biopersistence can only be directly measured in in vivo test systems, i.e. following inhalation, instillation or injection in experimental animals. The rate of removal of fibres is typically expressed as “half life” – the time it takes for the number of fibres in the lungs to be reduced by 50%. Read more »

post

2014, a retrospective

With Christmas and the end of 2014 approaching we are taking the opportunity to look back on a very busy year:

CARE programme

With the CARE programme running in its 18th year, ECFIA´s occupational hygienists have taken more than 6000 exposure measurements in production sites or HTIW user facilities throughout Europe. These add up to the total number of more than 22000 measurements that are now in ECFIA´s CARE programme data base. Along with these monitoring activities, ECFIA´s occupational hygienists advised the companies visited on good working practices to minimise fibrous dust whenever this was necessary.

Also ECFIA´s experts have taken the time to write down their knowledge resulting in 5 new CARE Guidance documents. These expand the CARE Guidance library to a total of 14 documents.

As it is one of ECFIA´s main objectives to develop safe working practices and good occupational health and safety standards in the production and use of HTIW, the CARE programme will remain one of our main activities in the upcoming years.

Science

June 2014 marked Cranfield University’s much anticipated conference on ‘Advances and Controversies in Fibre Toxicology’. This was supported by ECFIA and headed up by our toxicology adviser, Paul Harrison, who is a Visiting Professor at Cranfield. A range of expert speakers, including ECFIA Board member Ron Wainwright, spoke on a range of topics that inspired healthy and sometimes heated debate. Cranfield University will be publishing an output from the conference on their website in the new year.

Also in 2014 a number of important scientific papers were published, including a study by Christina Ziemann and colleagues at Fraunhofer ITEM that demonstrated the lack of toxicity/genotoxicity of devitrified (heated) AES fibres (Ziemann et al., 2014, Inhalation Toxicology, 26, 113-27). This was followed by the publication of a more general review of the literature on the formation and toxic consequences of crystalline silica in devitrified synthetic vitreous fibres such as AES and ASW/RCF (Brown & Harrison, 2014, Regulatory Toxicology and Pharmacology, 68, 152-159). Both these papers were co-authored by our toxicology advisor. Results from these studies were used to update the ECFIA ‘ACTION’ note on crystalline silica in after-service HTIW products.

REACH

REACH has been a major topic for ECFIA in 2014. Our main initiatives focused on raising awareness of the possible impact of a decision on subjecting (Zirconia) Alumino Silicate RCF to authorization for use in Europe.

The results of the three-month public consultation conducted in 2013 were evaluated by the Member State Committee (MSC), in co-operation with ECHA. This evaluation took longer than expected as a number of arguments were raised in the public consultation questioning whether the quality of information to support (Zirconia) Alumino Silicate RCF authorisation was adequate. On Feb 10th 2014, ECHA published the decision to refer the 5th recommendation to the European Commission for final review and decision. There it has been challenged by several Member States and the 5th recommendation is actually now on hold. The latest information from the European Commission indicates that they will pick up the discussion in the second half of 2015.

Position paper on Risk Management Option Assessment

While working with and supporting ECHA in the REACH process, ECFIA and several other user industry associations deliberated on other feasible ways to implement efficient and effective workplace controls.

The resulting position paper signed by ECFIA and 13 major industry associations shows the advantages of the introduction of a Binding Occupational Exposure Limit Value (BOELV) under the existing framework of the Carcinogens and Mutagens Directive (CMD). It states that the BOELV is a way to achieve the overall objective of improved risk management via harmonized workplace controls and is therefore preferable to the authorisation process under REACH.

Position paper on Socio-Economic Implications

In September 2014 ECHA published its 6th recommendation of substances for inclusion in the Authorisation List. As a lesson learned from earlier public consultations, the European Commission launched a request to provide comments on socio-economic implications.

Inspired by the Commission´s initiative, ECFIA along with the other associations looked into the potential implications of a non-use scenario for (Zirconia) Alumino Silicate Wool, including substitution, impacts on the environment, global competitiveness, innovation, safety and legal compliance. The paper concludes that (Alumino) Silicate RCF has been successfully substituted where technically and economically feasible and that “non-use” of this material could lead to a wide range of undesired socio-economic consequences.

 


 

We would like to thank you for your interest in ECFIA and our activities and wish you and your families a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

 

post

New associate member

M. E. Schupp, High Temperature Technology, has joined ECFIA to become its 6th associate member. This family-owned company, based at Aachen, Germany, provides high-temperature components for laboratory and industrial furnace equipment and PTCR® measurement rings.

post

Chemical Watch features ECFIA´s position on RMOA for ASW

Since 2007, Chemical Watch has been supplying companies with a premium news service, with daily news and weekly news alerts covering REACH, GHS and other global chemical regulations, policy and implementation, as well as industry initiatives, NGO viewpoints and emerging science.

Read more »