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ASSE Audio Conference to Address Impacts of OSHA Hexavalent Chromium Standard on the Safety Profession

Posted in on Fri, Jan 5, 2007

Des Plaines, IL (January 5, 2007) —
Contact: Joanna Climer, 847-768-3404,

For Immediate Release


DES PLAINES, IL (January 05, 2007) – The American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE) will be host to an Audio Conference Call this January 17 from 11:00 AM to 12:30 PM CDT to discuss the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) Hexavalent Chromium Standard and its impacts on the safety, health and environmental (SH&E) profession. Exposures to hexavalent chromium are addressed in federal specific standards for the general industry, shipyard employment, marine terminals and the construction industry.

Hexavalent chromium, or Chromium hexavalent (Cr(VI)), compounds exist in many different forms. Chromates are used in many industries. For example, chromates are used as pigments for photography, in pyrotechnics, dyes, paints, inks and plastics as well as for stainless steel production, leather tanning, wood preservation and as anti-corrosion coatings. Occupational exposure of Cr(VI) occurs in several occupations but mostly among workers handling pigments, spray paints and coatings that contain chromates; operating chrome plating baths; and welding or cutting metals that contain chromium. Welding that involves stainless steel, a metal that contains chromium, has a high exposure risk to hexavalent chromium.

There are health effects of exposure to hexavalent chromium. Various chromate compounds are known to be carcinogenic (cancer-causing) in humans. According to OSHA, an increase in lung cancer has been reported among workers in industries that produce chromate and manufacture pigments containing chromate.

The conference call will focus on the OSHA regulatory framework for hexavalent chromium, the requirements of the standard, the hexavalent chromium hazard assessment and what is an accepted practice in terms of compliance as well as enforcement of the standard.

David O’Connor from the OSHA Directorate of Standards and Guidance will give a sixty-minute overview about the standard, its requirements and how it must be implemented by SH&E professionals. There will be a question and answer session following the presentation.

O’Connor currently serves as an industrial hygienist in the Office of Chemical Hazards-Metals for the OSHA Directorate of Standards and Guidance. He has worked in the development of standards and guidance with OSHA for nine years. In addition to the hexavalent chromium rulemaking, he has been involved in projects related to hazard communication, blood borne pathogens, ergonomics and beryllium. He received his undergraduate degree from Michigan State University and a master’s from the University of South Florida.

Registrants will have access to the audio conference, a PowerPoint presentation, resource materials, articles and a compact disk recording of the call. To register for the audio conference contact ASSE Customer Service at 847-699-2929 or visit the ASSE website at

Founded in 1911, the Des Plaines, IL-based ASSE is the largest and oldest professional safety organization and has more than 30,000 occupational safety, health and environmental professional members who manage, supervise, research and consult on safety, health, transportation and environmental issues in all industries, government, labor and education.

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