§ 197.540 - Determination of personal exposure.
(a) General. (1) The employer shall ensure that one or more persons in each type of operation conducted on the vessel which involves the handling of or potential exposure to benzene are monitored. The monitoring must be conducted so as to determine the representative personal exposure of all persons engaged in each particular operation involving benzene. Monitoring one vessel of a class is sufficient for all vessels of that class provided the procedures, equipment, work practices, cargo, and control equipment are substantially the same.
(2) For long duration operations, such as cargo loading or tank entry, the persons monitored must be monitored to determine the representative TWA for all persons engaged in the operation. The monitoring must be based on breathing zone air samples taken for the duration of the operation or for eight hours, whichever is less.
(3) For short duration operations, such as tank gauging or hose connection and disconnection, the persons monitored must be monitored to determine the representative short term exposure level for all persons engaged in the operation. The monitoring must be based on 15 minute breathing zone air samples. Brief period measuring devices may be used to determine whether monitoring for the short term exposure level is needed.
(4) If cargoes with different benzene concentrations are being carried on the vessel, an operation involving the lower concentration cargoes need not be monitored if the same type of operation involving the highest concentration cargo is monitored and found to be below the action level.
(5) Initial monitoring must be conducted during weather conditions typical in the geographic area and during the time of day the operation is normally conducted. If the benzene level is above half the action level for the operation, additional monitoring must be conducted under those weather conditions that will maximize benzene exposure, such as low wind, stable air, and high temperature.
(6) The monitoring method used must be accurate to a confidence level of 95 percent to within plus or minus 25 percent for airborne concentrations of benzene equal to or greater than 0.5 ppm.
(b) Initial exposure monitoring. When benzene is first loaded as a cargo on board a vessel, an initial monitoring of each type of operation must be conducted to determine accurately the representative personal exposure of persons involved in the operation.
(c) Periodic exposure monitoring. The monitoring must be repeated each July or August if benzene containing cargoes are carried during those months; monitoring must be conducted under those weather conditions that will maximize benzene exposure, such as low wind, stable air, and high temperature. If benzene containing cargoes are not carried during those months, monitoring must be conducted at the time of carriage nearest those months; monitoring must be conducted under those weather conditions that will maximize benzene exposure, such as low wind, stable air, and high temperature.
(d) Additional exposure monitoring. (1) Monitoring in compliance with paragraphs (b) and (c) of this section must be repeated for the operation when there has been a change in the procedure, equipment, or work practices of the operation which may increase personal exposure or whenever the employer or person in charge has any reason to suspect that personal exposure has increased.
(2) Whenever emergencies occur that may increase personal exposure, operations affected by the emergency must be monitored using area or personal sampling after the spill is cleaned up or the leak, rupture, or other breakdown is repaired to determine when personal exposure has returned to the level that existed before the emergency. There must be monitoring equipment aboard each ship.
(3) For those cases in which the benzene exposure can vary significantly over the year, the personnel exposure reduction plan can reflect this variation in time if both initial and periodic exposure monitoring are conducted at those times. There must be sufficient monitoring to quantitatively justify differences in the exposure reduction program over the course of the year. The exposure monitoring must be conducted under those weather conditions that will maximize benzene exposure, such as low wind, stable air, and high temperature.
(4) The Coast Guard may require additional monitoring upon reasonable belief that the PEL's are being exceeded.
(e) Notification of exposure monitoring results. (1) Within 60 working days after the receipt of the results of monitoring in compliance with this section, each person involved in the operation monitored must be given written notice of the results, either by separate letter or by notice posted in a location accessible to all persons involved.
(2) If the results indicate that the PELs were exceeded, the written notice required by paragraph (e)(1) of this section must state, or refer to a document available to the persons involved which states, the corrective action to be taken to reduce the personal exposure to or below the PELs.