The blue haze.
Imagine 153 million gallons of metal-working fluids? It's an amount that can fill literally 50,000 tank cars, and it's the amount consumed by US metal-working manufacturers every year.
You don't have to look farther than the blue haze that hangs over even the cleanest high production machining operations to recognize the ominous consequences to worker health that misting fluids can pose.
That threat didn't escape the notice of organized labor Organized Labor
An association of workers united as a single, representative entity for the purpose of improving the workers' economic status and working conditions through collective bargaining with employers. Also known as "unions". . A few years ago labor and the automakers agreed on a timetable to reduce the amount of oil mist in the air even further than the OSHA-mandated 5 mg/[m.sup.3] to ensure worker health.
Dermatitis dermatitis (dûr'mətī`tĭs), nonspecific irritation of the skin. The causative agent may be a bacterium, fungus, or parasite; it can also be a foreign substance, known as an allergen. due to contact with fluids has long been recognized as a health concern. Inhaling tiny droplets of fluid is a more recently identified threat - with debilitating de·bil·i·tat·ing
Causing a loss of strength or energy.
Weakening, or reducing the strength of.
Mentioned in: Stress Reduction , even deadly, consequences.
As more problematic health concerns surface, metalworking fluids have been increasingly put under an environmental microscope.
Writing in these pages several years ago, Clyde A Sluhan, founder of Master Chemical Corp, incisively commented that operator safety had assumed "absolute first place in the list of selection criteria" of metalworking fluids. The pioneer in formulating synthetic coolants ascribed the reason to "a society that in the last 30 years has turned excessively litigious litigious adj. referring to a person who constantly brings or prolongs legal actions, particularly when the legal maneuvers are unnecessary or unfounded. Such persons often enjoy legal battles, controversy, the courtroom, the spotlight, use the courts to punish and irrationally chemophobic."
US automakers and their suppliers heeded labor's message. Answers were sought in machine redesign, reformulated fluids, and coolant coolant (kōō´lnt),
n recycling systems.
Equipment builders added enclosures to transfer lines and stand-alone machine tools alike. Ford, for example, will not take delivery of transfer lines that are not fully enclosed with self-contained fluid and chip collection systems.
The final droplets of fluid mists have yet to be wrung wrung
Past tense and past participle of wring.
the past of wring
wrung wring out of every cubic meter Noun 1. cubic meter - a metric unit of volume or capacity equal to 1000 liters
cubic metre, kiloliter, kilolitre
metric capacity unit - a capacity unit defined in metric terms of air by these measures, though significant progress has been made. Current levels in automotive industry The automotive industry is the industry involved in the design, development, manufacture, marketing, and sale of motor vehicles. In 2006, more than 69 million motor vehicles, including cars and commercial vehicles were produced worldwide. machining plants average 2 mg/[m.sup.3]. The effort to reach the final goal (0.5 mg/[m.sup.3]) agreed upon Adj. 1. agreed upon - constituted or contracted by stipulation or agreement; "stipulatory obligations"
noncontroversial, uncontroversial - not likely to arouse controversy among automakers and the union has reached the point of diminishing returns for invested dollars.
The price tag for the auto companies, alone, would be substantial. The cost to enclose machines and install collectors in a one million sq ft plant to catch splashing and misting coolant is estimated at $8.5 million. Another half million dollars would be needed to operate it for a year. GM, alone, has 70 million square feet of plant in which machining is done.
To date, only the largest manufacturers in the automotive industry and their suppliers appear to be listening. The cost to the many smaller manufacturers with their huge inventory of stand-alone machines is incalculable. And yet that's where the heaviest burden would be felt when government, prodded by the environmentally concerned, drops the other shoe. As it undoubtedly will if industry does not move to clean up its own act.