Queensland teacher sun survey: measurements and procedures for recording occupational UV exposures in Townsville and Toowoomba

Downs, Nathan and Harrison, Simone and Parisi, Alfio (2015) Queensland teacher sun survey: measurements and procedures for recording occupational UV exposures in Townsville and Toowoomba. In: Townsville Health Symposium 2015, 7-9 Oct 2015, Townsville, Australia.

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Abstract

Background/Aims: Occupational exposure guidelines have been developed by the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP) which weight a UV source corresponding to its potential to cause harm to the skin or eye. When weighted across the incident UV spectrum this limit is expressed as 30 Jm-2 per 8 hour working day. Local calibration procedures and UV exposure results were made to participating teachers in Townsville and Toowoomba to assess occupational UV exposure risk.

Methods: Calibrated polysulphone dosimeter badges were distributed to 58 primary and secondary teachers, employed in a range of teaching roles and compared to self reported exposure times during the Queensland teaching term 4, November 2014 for teaching staff located in Townsville (18 oS) and Toowoomba (27.5 oS).

Results: The calibration process required to measure site specific personal UV exposures relative to the ICNIRP guidelines are presented for both participating teacher groups in the November 2014 survey. A total of 474 ICNIRP weighted daily UV exposures were collected ranging from 0 to 279 Jm-2. Of these, 109 exposures exceeded the ICNIRP daily exposure limit of 30 Jm-2.

Conclusion: In Queensland, the potential for harm as a result of exposure to solar UV in an outdoor occupational setting is high. The influence of a high UV climate and the requirement of teaching staff to spend some periods of time outdoors, supervising children during lunch breaks and sporting activities can result in exposures greater than the ICNIRP occupational UVR exposure guidelines.


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Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Commonwealth Reporting Category E) (Paper)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Abstract only published in Proceedings. No evidence of copyright restrictions preventing deposit of Submitted Version.
Faculty / Department / School: Current - Faculty of Health, Engineering and Sciences - School of Agricultural, Computational and Environmental Sciences
Date Deposited: 17 Jun 2016 04:05
Last Modified: 07 Jul 2016 03:33
Uncontrolled Keywords: occupational health and safety; ultraviolet; teachers; ICNIRP
Fields of Research : 11 Medical and Health Sciences > 1117 Public Health and Health Services > 111716 Preventive Medicine
11 Medical and Health Sciences > 1117 Public Health and Health Services > 111705 Environmental and Occupational Health and Safety
02 Physical Sciences > 0299 Other Physical Sciences > 029901 Biological Physics
Socio-Economic Objective: C Society > 92 Health > 9204 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) > 920405 Environmental Health
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/27910

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