What is employee exposure testing?

Often time employers are tasked with determining whether their employees need to wear certain PPE (personal protective equipment), or are being exposed to indoor air quality problems.  These needs may be based on their exposure to certain gases or particulates during the normal course of their job duties.  The testing for these different factors can be confusing and complex, but Hawk Environmental Services has the experience and equipment necessary to properly carry-out these tests.

How is testing employee exposure to air quality concerns performed?

  • Step 1:  Contact Hawk Environmental Services and discuss the materials that your employee may be exposed to in the course of normal work.
  • Step 2:  Hawk Environmental Services will discuss the best testing methods, analytical methods, and logistics for this testing.
  • Step 3:  Once methods and logistics have been worked out, we will generate a formal proposal and email it to you as a pdf document.  This proposal will outline the steps for testing, specific methodology/test codes, exact costs, and any special criteria that may need to be met for accurate testing.
  • Step 4: Once the proposal has been approved, our inspector will meet at your facility, set-up all necessary testing equipment, photo-document the process of testing, and manage sample collection.
  • Step 5: Once the testing has been completed, the samples will be processed by the lab and results will be compiled into a formal testing report that outlines the tests performed, lab results, and their relation to pertinent permissible exposure limits.  These reports are typically available within 6-10 business days, but faster turn-around-times can be accommodated.
Welding fume air testing

Will my employees need special training for exposure testing?

Our inspectors and technicians will meet at your facility prior to the start of testing.  They will spend 15-60 minutes calibrating the equipment and setting up the sampling media.  Once your employees arrive, the inspector will carefully walk each one through the testing plan.  Typically this involves affixing a personal sampling pump to the employees belt, a sampling tube or cassette to their shirt, and a discussion of how to prevent damage or disturbance to the testing setup.

What types of employee exposure testing are available?

Employee exposure testing can be performed in a variety of ways.  The air is sampled with with a meter or through a sampling cassette/tube in the breathing zone of the employee or the ambient air in the work space.  Hawk Environmental Services offers a wide variety of testing and monitoring for employee exposure and indoor air quality, a sample of the more common tests is listed here:

Testing by meter or monitor

(results can be measured on a per minute basis with charts and graphs of logged included in report)

  • Carbon Monoxide (CO)
  • Carbon Dioxide (CO2)
  • Hydrogen Sulfide (H2s)
  • Ammonia (NH4)
  • Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2)
  • Combustible gases or vapors (% LEL)
  • Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC)
  • Oxygen (O2)
  • Hydrogen Cyanide (HCN)
  • Sulfur Dioxide (SO2)
  • Chlorine (Cl2)
  • Chlorine Dioxide (ClO2)
  • Phosphine (PH3)
  • Ethylene Oxide (EtO)

Air Quality Testing by cassette, sorbent tube, or summa canister

  • Many target VOCs via EPA TO-15 (click for standard list)
  • Total particulates PM10, PM5, PM2.5, PM1, PM0.5, PM0.3 respirable
  • Nuisance Dust
  • Asbestos fibers
  • Lead dust
  • Welding Fumes
  • Hexavalent Chromium
  • Cutting Fluids
  • Isocyanates
  • Silica
  • Various metals vapor or dust
  • Styrene, benzene, xylenes, toluene, isopropyl alcohol, and other solvents

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