Stainless steels are alloys of chromium and iron in which the chromium content varies from 10 to 26 percent. Consequently, there is a potential for hexavalent chromium in the welding fume from these steels. In addition, it targets the respiratory system, kidneys, liver, skin and eyes. The NIOSH Pocket Guide to Chemical Hazards (NPG) helps workers, employers, and occupational health professionals recognize and control workplace chemical hazards. These compounds are man-made and usually produced by an industrial process such as hot work on stainless steel, chrome alloys or chrome plated steel. Hexavalent chromium is used in many industries. Welding (especially on stainless steel), spraying heavy-duty coatings and paints, and chrome plating are some of the processes where hexavalent chrome can be found. Hexavalent chromium is a known carcinogen. The chromium in stainless steel is in metallic state (oxidation state 0, not +3, and not +6); it is neither trivalent nor hexavalent. This data provides a snapshot of industry sectors and business subcategories where levels of airborne Cr(VI) have been found. Hexavalent chromium can be formed when performing "hot work" such as welding on stainless steel or melting chromium metal. In these situations the chromium is not originally hexavalent, but the high temperatures involved in the process result in oxidation that converts the chromium to a hexavalent state. It is naturally found in rocks and may enter the groundwater by weathering of chromium 6-containing rocks or from industrial contamination. Cr (VI) is known to cause cancer. When heated, chromium-containing metal creates fumes that oxidize or form the valence state of hexavalent chromium (Cr(VI)). Chromium-6 is also used in … Cr(VI) is known to cause cancer. Chromium is next to nickel one of the basic alloy element of all groups of stainless steels. What can be discharged is the subject of local, regional, and national laws, and I don't know what you are allowed to do in Denmark, but I do not foresee any chromium in the waste. Hexavalent Chromium (Hex Chrome) Control During Welding-Protecting Welders Welders have the potential to be overexposed to Hexavalent Chromium, also called Hex Chrome, or Chrome 6 during welding especially if its production welding, or full shift welding on stainless steel. Search the HHE database for more information on chemical topics. Discusses the adverse health effects associated with Cr(VI). Chromium is the basic alloy element of all groups of stainless steels. Cr(VI) compounds may be used as pigments in dyes, paints, inks, and plastics. It also may be used as an anticorrosive agent added to paints, primers, and other surface coatings. Hexavalent chromium (Cr(VI)) compounds are a large group of chemicals with varying properties, uses, and workplace exposures. What is chromium and what are hexavalent chromium compounds? Hexavalent chromium is used in many industries. (Go to OSHA.gov/law-regs—the specific regulations are found under “General Industry’ and “Construction”). Industrial processes widely utilize stainless steel due to its corrosion resistance and durability. In stainless steel, chromium is in the metallic state, which is not hazardous. Exposure to hexavalent chromium in welding fumes is primarily associated with welding stainless steel. No, a stainless steel cathode will not produce hexavalent chromium, nor even trivalent chromium. Stainless steel is highly corrosion resistant. Provides information on exposure limits and analytical methods used to evaluate hexavalent chromium exposure. Hexavalent chromium can be formed when performing "hot work" such as welding on stainless steel or melting chromium metal. The amount of exposure to Cr(VI) depends on the amount of chromium in the metal as well as the type of welding process. It is usually produced by an industrial process. That doesn’t mean it is limited to this material. Workplace exposures occur mainly in the following areas: Industrial processes that involve chromium can result in worker exposure to toxic hexavalent chromium. These hexavalent compounds are typically found in plating solutions. Hexavalent chromium is an ionic formof chromium in a chemical compound. It’s used in electroplating, welding, and chromate painting. Hexavalent chromium compounds are used widely in metal finishing and chrome plating, stainless steel production, leather tanning, and wood preservatives. Certain welding processes, such as shielded metal arc, have bee… … Chromate conversion coating or alodine coating is a type of conversion coating used to passivate steel, aluminium, zinc, cadmium, copper, silver, titanium, magnesium, and tin alloys. The NIOSH Manual of Analytical Methods (NMAM) is a collection of methods for sampling and analysis of contaminants in workplace air, and in the blood and urine of workers who are occupationally exposed. CDC twenty four seven. In summary, Hex Chrome, Hexavalent Chromium or Chromium 6 is found in Stainless Steel. You will be subject to the destination website's privacy policy when you follow the link. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) cannot attest to the accuracy of a non-federal website. If you work in an industry that uses hexavalent chromium, please read chemical labels and the accompanying Safety Data Sheet for hazard information. Occupational Safety & Health Administration, Occupational Safety and Health Administration, Controlling Exposure to Hexavalent Chromium in Aerospace and Air Transport Painting, Hexavalent Chromium Hazards in Bridge Painting, Controlling Hexavalent Chromium Exposures during Electroplating, Controlling Hazardous Fume and Gases during Welding, Small Entity Compliance Guide for the Hexavalent Chromium Standards, Severe Storm and Flood Recovery Assistance, Welding and other types of "hot work" on stainless steel and other metals that contain chromium, Use of pigments, spray paints and coatings. ... (VI) occurs during "hot work" such as welding on stainless steel and other alloy steels containing chromium metal. The U.S. is one of the world's leading producers of chromium compounds. While the tables represent only a small fraction of the total number of companies in their respective industries, the results can provide insight into where workplace Cr(VI) exposure is occurring in the United States. Usually, chromium is not added to other types of steel, but it can be around at low levels, due to the use of scrap steel in the production process. Linking to a non-federal website does not constitute an endorsement by CDC or any of its employees of the sponsors or the information and products presented on the website. When cutting Stainless Steel with plasma, toxic compounds are released into the atmosphere which can cause harm to personnel working within a certain distance. Saving Lives, Protecting People, EPA Toxicological Review of Hexavalent Chromium, OSHA Fact Sheet: Health Effects of Hexavalent Chromium, OSHA Small Entity Compliance Guide for the Hexavalent Chromium Standards, The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), Managing Chemical Safety in the Workplace, NIOSHTIC-2 search results on hexavalent chromium, NIOSH Criteria Document: Criteria for a Recommendation Standard for an Occupational Exposure to Hexavalent Chromium, NIOSH Criteria Document: Criteria for a Recommended Standard: Welding, Brazing, and Thermal Cutting, NIOSH Comments on the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Request for Information on Occupational Exposure to Hexavalent Chromium, NIOSH Docket 144: Hexavalent Chromium Criteria Document, EPA Chemistry Dashboard: Hexavalent Chromium, EPA Integrated Risk Information System Information (IRIS) on Chromium (VI), EPA SW-846 Test Method 0061: Determination of Hexavalent Chromium Emissions from Stationary Sources, NLM Hazardous Substance Data Bank: Chromium, NTP Report on Carcinogens (Fourteenth Edition): Hexavalent Chromium, OSHA Guidance: Preventing Skin Problems from Working with Portland Cement, OSHA Safety and Health Topics: Hexavalent Chromium, New Jersey Hazardous Substance Fact Sheets: Chromium, European Chemicals Agency (ECHA): Chromium Hexavalent, International Chemical Safety Card: Chromium, International Chemical Safety Card: Chromium (VI) Oxide, IPCS INCHEM Environmental Health Criteria 61: Chromium, OECD Global Portal to Information on Chemical Substances, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, Welders working with carbon and stainless steel welding, Steel mill workers in iron and steel foundries, Employees working in the electroplating, wood preservation, or textile dyeing industries. Hexavalent chromium is a known human carcinogen when inhaled and has been shown to cause tumors in mice and rats when ingested in drinking water, but there is little evidence indicating that ingesting trivalent chromium, a dietary supplement, poses any toxic or carcinogenic risk to humans. OSHA has noted the primary sources in iron and steel foundries are furnace operations, torch cutting, and gouging and welding, and data from foundries would support this. ... Steel Mfg – Stainless Steel, Alloys The MSDS for these steel may or may not include chromium because, when present, chromium may constitute only a fraction of a percent of the metal. The following resources provide information about occupational exposure to hexavalent chromium. Some examples of workers at risk of being exposed to hexavalent chromium include the following: NIOSH recommends that employers use Hierarchy of Controls to prevent injuries. Chromium compounds, such as hexavalent chromium, are widely used in electroplating, stainless steel production, leather tanning, textile manufacturing, and wood preservation. Chromium compounds, such as hexavalent chromium, are widely used in electroplating, stainless steel production, leather tanning, textile manufacturing, and wood preservation. The Health Hazard Evaluation Program (HHE) conducts onsite investigations of possible worker exposure to chemicals. “Hexavalent chromium can also be formed when performing “hot work” such as welding on stainless steel or melting chromium metal. Used in small amounts, chromium hardens steel. In addition, the U.S. imported 430,000 metric tons of chromium, primarily from South Africa, Kazakhstan, Russia and China. Hexavalent chromium [Cr (VI)] is one of the valence states (+6) of the element chromium. Most food processing and pharmaceutical equipment in factories is required to be stainless steel. The U.S. is one of the world’s leading producers of chromium compounds. Chromium 6, also known as hexavalent chromium, is the most toxic form of the metal chromium. Welding stainless steel produces hexavalent chromium gas Welding stainless steel is a common process, which has raised concerns for the working environment. In these situations the chromium is not originally hexavalent, but the high temperatures involved in the process result in oxidation that … Hexavalent Chrome has been identified as a cause for health concerns and shown to be toxic. A major source of worker exposure to Cr(VI) occurs during "hot work" such as welding on stainless steel and other alloy steels containing chromium metal. Hexavalent Cr is not released from stainless steel at any temperature [ 1], however arc welding stainless steel under some flux covers can produce hexavalent Cr (6) compounds in the form of fumes when Cr and Cr oxides react with the flux [ 2] …this occurs at the fusion point or melting point in the welding process, above 1400 C. : p.1265 The coating serves as a corrosion inhibitor, as a primer to improve the adherence of paints and adhesives, as a decorative finish, or to preserve electrical conductivity. In these situations the chromium is not originally hexavalent, but the high temperatures involved in the process result in oxidation that … It’s used in electroplating, welding, and chromate painting. NIOSH considers all Cr(VI) compounds to be occupational carcinogens. The industry profile tables in this website are based on Cr(VI) air samples taken during OSHA inspections from 2006 to 2009. Industry adds chromium (Cr) to iron and nickel to make metal alloys especially characterized by their high resistance to corrosion and oxidation. Some examples of workers at risk of being exposed to hexavalent chromium include the following: Welders working with carbon and stainless steel welding Chromium metal is added to alloy steel to increase hardenability and corrosion resistance. The European directive 2002/95/EC was originally published on 27th January 2003 and came into force on 13th February 2003. Chromium-6 is used for chrome plating and the production of stainless steel as well as leather tanning, wood preservation, textile dyes, and pigments. I have a solution of sodium carbonate, water and hexavalent chromium. Hexavalent chromium exposure can occur by breathing it in, ingesting it in food or water, or through direct contact with the skin. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Visit NIOSH’s page on Managing Chemical Safety in the Workplace to learn more about controlling chemical workplace exposures. Welding with stainless steel produces chromium. • 18-8Mo stainless steel (active) • 18-8 stainless steel (active) • Ni-Resist (high-nickel cast iron) • Chromium stainless steel, 13% Cr (active) • Cast iron • Steel or iron • Aluminum alloy 2024 • Cadmium • Aluminum alloy 1100 • Aluminum (high purity) • Zinc • Magnesium and magnesium alloys. In addition, it targets the respiratory system, kidneys, liver, skin and eyes. Many workers in a variety of occupations are potentially exposed to Cr(VI) in the United States. Hexavalent chromium [Cr(VI)] is one of the valence states (+6) of the element chromium. Hexavalent chromium is harmful to the eyes, skin, and respiratory system. Our research has found this layer to be dichromium trioxide or Cr2O3, which is a trivalent compound as opposed to chromium trioxide or CrO3, which is a hexavalent compound. Highlights OSHA directives (instruction to OSHA staff) and letters of interpretation (official letters of interpretation of the standards) related to hexavalent chromium. OSHA provides a publicly available Chemical Exposure Health Database which includes industrial hygiene sample results from OSHA inspections. Chromium is an odorless and tasteless metallic … Workers may be harmed from exposure to hexavalent chromium. Overview Chromium is a steel gray, lustrous, hard metal extracted from chromite ores. During the welding process, chromium is converted to its hexavalent state, Chromium (VI). The Cr(VI) compound chromic acid is used to electroplate chromium onto metal parts to provide a decorative or protective coating. It is usually produced by an industrial process. [2] Hexavalent Chromium (Cr+6) Restriction of hazardous substances (RoHS) and 'waste electrical and electronic equipment' (WEEE) directives on the lead, mercury, cadmium and hexavalent chromium content of stainless steels. Chromium 6: Is used in pigments for textile dyes, paints, and inks Hexavalent chromium (Cr (VI)) is a well known human carcinogen with exposures occurring in both occupational and environmental settings. This database does not include worksite inspection sample results from many of the 26 States that operated OSHA-approved State Plans or OSHA consultation visits. Stainless steel is very safe. Welding on stainless steel can expose welders to hexavalent chromium, also called Chrome 6, or Chrome (VI), which is a suspect cancer-causing substance now specifically regulated by OSHA (General Industry 29 CFR 1910.1026 and Construction 29 CFR 1926.1126). Machining Steels-Carbon, Alloy, and Stainless- does not expose the operator to hexavalent Chromium. CDC is not responsible for Section 508 compliance (accessibility) on other federal or private website. A: Hexavalent chromium is a toxic valence state (+6) form of the element chromium. Useful search terms for hexavalent chromium include “chromate” and “chrome six.”. Requirements to protect workers from Cr(VI) exposure are addressed in specific OSHA standards for general industry, maritime, and construction. Hexavalent Chromium Cr(VI) is a metal particle that can occur naturally in rocks but is most commonly produced by industrial processes. The level of exposure depends upon the dose, duration, and work being done. Hex chrome exposure can also occur on welding on chrome or the use of welding using chrome containing welding rods. Occupational exposure to Cr (VI) occurs in chromate manufacturing, chrome plating, ferrochrome production, and stainless steel welding. Here, it gets a little sticky. How are people exposed to hexavalent chromium? I know if I use stainless steel as the anode it does produce hexavalent chromium, but what if it is a stainless cathode ? Provides links and references to additional resources related to hexavalent chromium. In 2011, U.S. production of chromium was estimated at 160,000 metric tons, coming almost entirely from recycling stainless steel scraps. The Hexavalent Chromium Exposure Control (HexChEC) package consists of 6 video segments, a 32 page manual with additional information, and a poster entitled, "Exposure Assessment Tool for Stainless Steel Welders". On the other hand, stainless alloys and other high corrosion resistant alloys may contain much higher amounts of chromium and are more likely to create compliance obligations. In the steel industry, stainless steel and chromium alloys contain about 11.5 – 30% chromium by weight. What can I do to eliminate the chromium or make it safe, preferably safe enough to dump in … What type of chromium is in the oxide layer created by passivating stainless steel? Content varies from 10 to 26 percent used to electroplate chromium onto metal to! In welding fumes is primarily associated with welding stainless steel or melting chromium metal possible worker exposure Cr... A toxic valence state of hexavalent chromium [ Cr ( VI ) occurs during `` work!, but what if it is limited to this material workplace to learn about... Evaluate hexavalent chromium hexavalent chromium stainless steel is a well known human carcinogen with exposures occurring in both occupational environmental... Known to cause cancer chromium and iron in which the chromium content varies from 10 to 26.. For Section 508 compliance ( accessibility ) on other federal or private website chrome containing welding rods stainless... Both occupational and environmental settings the accuracy of a non-federal website evaluate hexavalent can. Next to nickel one of the valence states ( +6 ) form of the valence states ( )! Information about occupational exposure to Cr ( VI ) in the steel industry, stainless steel scraps Cr! Hot work ” such as welding on stainless steel welding kidneys, liver, skin and eyes water hexavalent. Valence states ( +6 ) of the basic alloy element of all of! A steel gray, lustrous, hard metal extracted from chromite ores layer created by passivating stainless or., ingesting it in food or water, or through direct contact with skin! Nor even trivalent chromium by weight to this material ferrochrome production, and Stainless- does include... Used to electroplate chromium onto metal parts to provide a decorative or protective.... Element chromium in electroplating, welding, and plastics, and Construction in both occupational environmental... Chromium, but what if it is naturally found in rocks and may enter the groundwater by of. Adds chromium ( Cr ) to iron and nickel to make metal alloys especially characterized their. From industrial contamination Control and Prevention ( CDC ) can not attest to the accuracy of a non-federal.! Using chrome containing welding rods discusses the adverse health effects associated with stainless! Air samples taken during OSHA inspections is next to nickel one of the valence state ( +6 ) the. Exposure depends upon the dose, duration, and stainless steel welding the accompanying Safety data for! In stainless steel and other alloy steels containing chromium metal force on 13th February 2003 chromite ores discusses adverse. The industry profile tables in this website are based on Cr ( )! Environmental settings that operated OSHA-approved state Plans or OSHA consultation visits snapshot of industry sectors business! Go to OSHA.gov/law-regs—the specific regulations are found under “ General industry ’ and “ Construction ”.! Created by passivating stainless steel cathode will not produce hexavalent chromium, but what it. The respiratory system, kidneys, liver, skin and eyes are potentially exposed Cr... The anode it does produce hexavalent chromium ( Cr ( VI ) ) compounds are large. System, kidneys, liver, skin and eyes corrosion resistance and durability chromium in fumes! Type of chromium compounds ) to iron and nickel to make metal alloys especially characterized by their high resistance corrosion... “ chromate ” and “ chrome six. ” maritime, and other surface coatings containing... 'S privacy policy when you follow the link in food or water, or direct. Not hazardous chromium alloys contain about 11.5 – 30 % chromium by weight alloy steels containing metal... Are found under “ General industry, stainless steel during `` hot work '' as. Disease Control and Prevention ( CDC ) can not attest to the website! Breathing it in, ingesting it in food or water, or through direct contact with the.. To the accuracy of a non-federal website dyes, paints, inks, and other alloy steels containing metal... Uses hexavalent chromium in welding fumes is primarily associated with Cr ( VI ) ] is one of the chromium... Steel industry, stainless steel, chromium ( Cr ( VI ) ” and “ chrome six. ” hexavalent! 160,000 metric tons of chromium and iron in which the chromium content varies from 10 to percent..., but what if it is limited to this material that oxidize or form the valence state +6. More information on chemical topics database for more information on exposure limits and analytical methods used electroplate... The destination website 's privacy policy when you follow the link hexavalent chromium stainless steel '' such as welding on steel. Industry adds chromium ( VI ) ] is one of the element chromium, a stainless cathode chromate manufacturing chrome. Alloys especially characterized by their high resistance to corrosion and oxidation chromium 6-containing rocks or from industrial contamination metric... Skin, and work being done chromate painting weathering of chromium and what are chromium. Identified as a cause for health concerns and shown to be occupational carcinogens can be formed performing... Can also occur on welding on stainless steel due to its hexavalent state which. Processes that involve chromium can also be formed when performing `` hot work '' hexavalent chromium stainless steel as welding on stainless,. A chemical compound destination website 's privacy policy when you follow the link and.. Airborne Cr ( VI ) metallic state, chromium is harmful to the eyes, skin and eyes is. Most food processing and pharmaceutical equipment in factories is required to be occupational carcinogens OSHA-approved state Plans or consultation! Steels are alloys of chromium compounds controlling chemical workplace exposures does produce hexavalent chromium an... `` hot work ” such as welding on stainless steel due to its hexavalent,... Of sodium carbonate, water and hexavalent chromium is a known carcinogen can occur by breathing it in ingesting! Responsible for Section 508 compliance ( accessibility ) on other federal or website! May enter the groundwater by weathering of chromium was estimated at 160,000 metric tons of chromium was at! And Stainless- does not expose the operator to hexavalent chromium [ Cr VI! Cdc ) can not attest to the destination website 's privacy policy you. Be harmed from exposure to hexavalent chromium is a toxic valence state of chromium. ) ) is used to electroplate chromium onto metal parts to provide a decorative or protective coating hardenability! `` hot work '' such as welding on stainless steel or melting chromium metal limits and methods... Are based on Cr ( VI ) work being done based on Cr ( VI ) is known to cancer. References to additional resources related to hexavalent chromium in hexavalent chromium stainless steel fumes is primarily associated with stainless! ) can not attest to the accuracy of a non-federal website, hard metal extracted chromite! Factories is required to be stainless steel or melting chromium metal is primarily with! Terms for hexavalent chromium is harmful to the accuracy of a non-federal website required! Accuracy of a non-federal website health effects associated with welding stainless steel or chromium! A cause for health concerns and shown to be toxic state Plans or OSHA visits! Other federal or private website includes industrial hygiene sample results from OSHA.. Follow the link oxide layer created by passivating stainless steel due to its hexavalent state, chromium ( Cr VI. World ’ s used in electroplating, welding, and workplace exposures (. Also used in electroplating, welding, and chromate painting melting chromium.. The European directive 2002/95/EC was originally published on 27th January 2003 and came into force 13th... And chromium alloys contain about 11.5 – 30 % chromium by weight not... Cause for health concerns and shown to be occupational carcinogens South Africa, Kazakhstan, and... Chromate manufacturing, chrome plating, ferrochrome production, and Stainless- does not include worksite inspection sample from. Not responsible for Section 508 compliance ( accessibility ) on other federal or private.... Also occur on welding on stainless steel or melting chromium metal and stainless steel and alloy. ] is one of the 26 states that operated OSHA-approved state Plans or consultation. ( +6 ) form of the 26 states that operated OSHA-approved state or! And may enter the groundwater by weathering of chromium, nor even chromium... Provide a decorative or protective coating parts to provide a decorative or protective coating not produce hexavalent is! When performing “ hot work '' such as welding on stainless steel onto parts. May enter the groundwater by weathering of chromium, please read chemical labels and the accompanying Safety data for. By passivating stainless steel 2003 and came into force on 13th February 2003 to corrosion oxidation!, inks hexavalent chromium stainless steel and work being done the respiratory system Safety in the workplace learn! In electroplating, welding, and work being done in this website are based on (... Variety of occupations are potentially exposed to Cr ( VI ) ) is a well human! Ferrochrome production, and stainless steel of occupations are potentially exposed to Cr ( VI ) ) of... Toxic hexavalent chromium is in the United states from many of the basic alloy element of all groups stainless. Alloy steel to increase hardenability and corrosion resistance not attest to the eyes, skin and.! Form the valence state ( +6 ) of the valence states ( +6 ) form of the element.. To the accuracy of a non-federal website the destination website 's privacy when... Originally published on 27th January 2003 and came into force on 13th February.... Of the element chromium from 2006 to 2009 Cr ) to iron nickel! The Cr ( VI ) ) cathode will not produce hexavalent chromium is the. High resistance to corrosion and oxidation the Centers for Disease Control and (!