Cinnaminson, NJ, January 23, 2017
Antimony is a silvery-white metal that is found in the earth's crust. Although the Agency for Toxic Substances & Disease Registry (ATSDR) reports that little antimony is currently mined in the United States, it is brought into the country from other places for processing. There are also companies that produce antimony as a by-product of smelting lead and other metals.
Antimony ores are mixed with other metals to form antimony alloys or combined with oxygen to form antimony oxide. Mixed into alloys it is used in such products as lead storage batteries, solder, sheet and pipe metal, bearings, castings and pewter. Antimony oxide is added to textiles and plastics to prevent them from catching fire, and it is also used in paints, ceramics, fireworks and is used as enamels for plastics, metal and glass.
According to the ATSDR, antimony enters the environment during the mining and processing of its ores and in the production of antimony metal, alloys, antimony oxide and combinations of antimony with other substances. Small amounts of antimony are also released into the environment by incinerators and coal-burning power plants. The agency also reports that exposure to antimony at high levels can result in a variety of adverse health effects. Breathing high levels for a long period of time can irritate the eyes and lungs and can cause heart and lung problems, stomach pain, diarrhea, vomiting and stomach ulcers. Ingesting large doses can cause vomiting. Long-term animal studies have reported liver damage and blood changes when ingested. Antimony can also irritate the skin.
“Antimony can enter the human body when people drink water or eat food, soil or other substances that contain it,” said Joe Frasca, Senior Vice President of Marketing at EMSL Analytical, Inc. “It can also enter the body if people breathe contaminated air or dusts. Workers in industries that process or utilize antimony and its oxides are potentially at risk of exposure to elevated levels.”
There is an existing occupational airborne exposure limit from OSHA meant to protect workers. EMSL Analytical, Inc. offers testing for antimony and other occupational and environmental exposure hazards. These services protect the public and workers as well as help to keep companies in regulatory compliance. EMSL also recently sponsored an educational video about antimony exposures that can be seen at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rkFP_yYs2p0
To learn more about this or other occupational, environmental, air quality, health and safety testing services, please visit www.EMSL.com
, call (800) 220-3675 or email info@EMSL.com
About EMSL Analytical, Inc.
EMSL Analytical, Inc. is one of the leading testing laboratories with over 40 locations throughout the United States and Canada. EMSL is a nationally recognized and locally focused provider specializing in fast laboratory results for mold, bacteria, Legionella
, USP <797>, pathogens, asbestos, lead, soot, char & ash from fires, VOC’s, odors, radon, formaldehyde, indoor air quality, microbiology, environmental, industrial hygiene, radiological, food, beverage & consumer products and material testing services for the identification of unknown substances. EMSL services both professionals and the general public. EMSL maintains an extensive list of accreditations from leading organizations as well as state and federal regulating bodies including, but not limited to A2LA, AIHA LAP, LLC. (AIHA EMLAP, AIHA IHLAP, AIHA ELLAP), NVLAP, CDC ELITE, CPSC, CA ELAP, NY ELAP, TX DOH, NJDEP and multiple other state accrediting agencies. Please visit our website at www.EMSL.com
for a complete listing of accreditations. In addition, EMSL carries a wide range of Sampling Equipment and Investigative Products for environmental professionals.