Switzerland Publishes 2019 OEL And BEL Lists

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March 19, 2019 -

The Swiss National Accident Insurance Fund (SUVA) has issued the 2019 Swiss occupational (MAKs) and biological exposure limits (BATs).

Verisk 3E Review             

Typically updated every year in January, SUVA delayed publication of the 2019 lists until the end of February. The new publication has revised entries for many of the substances previously listed, added new substances to the list and deleted entries that are no longer relevant.

Of particular note, the updated list contains a new section on Chromium (VI) compounds. While Annex 1.17 of the 2005 Chemical Risk Reduction Ordinance (ChemRRV) prohibits the occupational and commercial use of certain chromium (VI) compounds, individual chromium (VI) compounds are exempted from this prohibition if they are used in processes in which chromium is not present in hexavalent form in the end products.

For these exempted uses, the 2019 MAK and BAT list establish a minimization requirement for chromium (VI) compounds, which is deemed to be fulfilled if the exposure of the employees averaged over one working day (8 hours) does not exceed 0.001 mg / m3 (calculated as Cr). The affected compounds include sodium dichromate, chromium trioxide and acids that form from chromium trioxide, such as chromic acid or dichromic acid.

Verisk 3E Analysis          

Although SUVA’s lists are guidance documents, manufacturers and importers are expected to make reference to the MAK and BAT values associated with substances and mixtures marketed in Switzerland on Safety Data Sheets (SDSs) and other reference documents.