Industry News

ECHA Agrees to Restrict Use of Diisocyanates at Workplaces

Published on 2017-12-18. Author : SpecialChem

The Committee for Risk Assessment (RAC) agreed on five and the Committee for Socio-economic Analysis (SEAC) agreed on eight draft authorization opinions on specific uses of chromium (VI) substances and 1,2-dichloroethane (EDC). These draft opinions will be sent to the applicants for comments before final adoption.

The Committees also finalized their work on six applications for authorization by adopting the opinions on eight uses of substances of very high concern.

Goal is to Prevent New Cases of Occupational Asthma

ECHA Agrees to Restrict Use of Diisocyanates at Workplaces
The Committees agreed to restrict the use of diisocyanates at the workplace, following a proposal by Germany. The main goal is to prevent new cases of occupational asthma from exposure to diisocyanates among industrial workers and professionals.

Chemical Building Blocks of Polyurethane

Diisocyanates are a family of chemical building blocks mainly used to make a wide range of polyurethane (PU) products. Two primary diisocyanates used in PU production are:

  • Toluene diisocyanate (TDI)
  • Methylenediphenyl diisocyanate (MDI)

TDI is used in the manufacture of coatings, sealants, adhesives and elastomers. MDI is used in the production of various coatings, adhesives, sealants, and elastomers used in items such as paints, glues, and weather resistant materials.

RAC also adopted its opinion, in support of the proposal by ECHA, to restrict the use of lead stabilizers in PVC articles.

More information on the agreed draft opinions under the authorization process, the eight adopted opinions on harmonized classification and labelling (CLH), and the two restriction proposals is available in the annex.

RAC Endorsed Final Report from ECHA/RAC and SCOEL

RAC also endorsed the final report from the joint Task Force of ECHA/RAC and the Scientific Committee for Occupational Exposure Limits (SCOEL), concerning the assessment of ECHA and SCOEL methodologies to assess exposure of workers to carcinogens in the workplace.

RAC continued working on evaluating three dossiers prepared by ECHA on occupational exposure limits (OELs) for nickel and its compounds, benzene and acrylonitrile.

This work has been requested by the Commission to support the development of binding OELs under the fourth amendment to Directive 2004/37/EC on the protection of workers from the risks related to exposure to carcinogens or mutagens at work (CMD). This work will be finalized in RAC 44 in March 2018 and is due to be reported to the Commission by 26 March 2018.

Source: ECHA
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