New and Revised Occupational Exposure Limits Effective February 1, 2015

January 5, 2015

At the November 2014 meeting, the Board of Directors (BOD) approved the adoption of the 2012 new and revised American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists Threshold Limit Values (ACGIH TLVs), as well as substances from previous years.

The BOD decided to adopt the ACGIH TLVs as B.C. Occupational Exposure Limits (OELs) for carbonyl sulfide, diacetyl, ethyl formate, and nonane. The BOD also decided to adopt the ACGIH TLVs revised in previous years for beryllium and compounds, vanadium pentoxide, alpha-methyl styrene, and Portland cement.

Effective February 1, 2015, these substances will be removed from the Table of OELs for Excluded Substances in Policy R5.48-1, and the ACGIH TLVs will be assigned as B.C. OELs as follows:

Substances WorkSafeBC Occupational Exposure Limits
8-Hour Time-Weighted Average Limit Short-Term Exposure Limit Ceiling Limit
Beryllium and compounds 0.00005 mg/m3 (inhalable)
Carbonyl sulfide 5 ppm
Diacetyl 0.01 ppm 0.02 ppm
Ethyl formate 100 ppm
alpha-Methyl styrene 10 ppm
Nonane 200 ppm
Portland cement 1 mg/m3 (respirable)
Vanadium pentoxide 0.05 mg/m3 (inhalable)

The BOD decided to maintain the existing exposure limits for allyl bromide, nitrogen dioxide, o-phthalodinitrile, and piperazine and its salts, due to sampling issues.

WorkSafeBC will continue to monitor the availability of sampling methods for these substances.


G. John Panusa, LL.M.
Barrister & Solicitor
Director, OHS Regulation, Policy & Governance