STUDY CALLS FOR ARTIFICIAL TURF USERS HEALTH WATCH
Inadequate monitoring could be jeopardising health suggests author
A study looking at artificial turf, made from recycled crumb rubber, suggests that inadequate monitoring could be jeopardising the health of sportspeople, children and those who work with the material.
The Chemical Watch website reports that the study - Artificial turf: Contested terrains for precautionary public health with particular reference to Europe? - calls for proper cumulative health impact assessments to be carried out.
Report author, Stirling University's Professor Andrew Watterson, writes that health concerns surround potential exposure and uptake of chemicals within pitch and base materials.
Research has looked at potential risks to users from substances, such as metals, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), including benzo (a) (e) pyrenes and phthalates, Professor Watterson writes. Some are carcinogens and others may be endocrine disruptors and have developmental reproductive effects, he adds.
But only one widely quoted biomonitoring study has been done, and no rigorous cancer epidemiological studies exist, he says.
Professor Watterson asks for improved information for users, as well as extensive health monitoring and surveillance by the local authorities and Health and Safety Executive (HSE), while data gaps exist.
Meanwhile, the Netherlands and Echa are considering a draft restriction proposal of the content of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in articles, which could be expanded to recycled rubber crumb. The current applicable limit value is not thought protective enough.
The study is published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health.