Styrene exposure and biologic monitoring in FRP boat production plants

Int Arch Occup Environ Health. 1982 Feb;49(3-4):325-39. doi: 10.1007/BF00377941.


A survey on styrene exposure was conducted in five small to medium-sized fiber-reinforced plastic (FRP) boat plants utilizing carbon felt dosimeters as personal and stationary samplers to measure 4h (TWA) exposure during workday afternoons. The heaviest exposure, up to 256 ppm by personal sampling and 174 ppm by stationary sampling, took place during the lamination on a mold to produce a boat shell, and the work inside narrow holds also resulted in exposures of a comparable degree. Styrene levels were much lower in other auxiliary works. The TWA of exposure in an entire boat production was estimated to be 40-50 ppm. Installation of several flexible hoses as an exhaust system was proved to be effective in decreasing the vapor concentration. Gas masks were also useful in reducing the exposure. Urine samples were collected from 96 male workers at the end of 8h work (4h in the morning and 4h in the afternoon) and also from 22 nonexposed male subjects, and analyzed for mandelic acid (MA), phenylglyoxylic acid (PhGA), and hippuric acid (HA). When the results of urinalyses were compared with 4-h styrene TWA as monitored by personal sampling, the best correlation was obtained with MA + PhGA/creatinine (the correlation coefficient, 0.88), followed by MA (0.84). For these two cases, regression lines and 95% confidence limits for the group means and for the individual values were calculated. The urinary level of MA, PhGA, and HA in the 22 nonexposed male subjects were also tabulated.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Air Pollutants / analysis*
  • Air Pollutants, Occupational / analysis*
  • Environmental Exposure
  • Female
  • Glyoxylates / urine
  • Hippurates / urine
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mandelic Acids / urine
  • Maximum Allowable Concentration
  • Styrenes / analysis
  • Styrenes / urine*


  • Air Pollutants
  • Air Pollutants, Occupational
  • Glyoxylates
  • Hippurates
  • Mandelic Acids
  • Styrenes
  • phenylglyoxylic acid
  • hippuric acid