Evaluation of police officers' exposure to secondhand cannabis smoke at open-air stadium events
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Evaluation of police officers' exposure to secondhand cannabis smoke at open-air stadium events

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    "A university Department of Environmental Health and Safety requested a NIOSH health hazard evaluation concerning possible exposure to secondhand cannabis smoke and how that might affect police officers' health while they perform security and law enforcement activities during campus concert events. Police officers who participated in this evaluation worked in areas within and around the university's open-air football stadium. Officers were assigned to different locations and patrolled on foot, on bicycles, and in small vehicles before, during, and after concert events. Over two consecutive concert days, we (1) observed work processes, practices, and workplace conditions; (2) collected personal and area air samples for tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the active ingredient in cannabis; (3) collected pre- and post-concert urine samples to test for THC, two markers of THC exposure (THC-COOH and OH-THC), and creatinine; (4) post-concert blood samples to test for THC, THC-COOH, and OH-THC; and (5) invited officers to complete a questionnaire asking about any potential health symptoms they may have experienced while working at the concert. We found measurable amounts of THC in personal and area air samples. Small amounts of THC-COOH, a chemical marker of THC exposure, were detected in urine samples, but not in blood samples. The amount found in the urine would not be considered positive in a routine drug screening test. The most common symptoms reported on the questionnaire were burning, itchy, or red eyes; dry mouth; headache; and coughing. We recommended encouraging police officers to report to their supervisors any symptoms they believe result from secondhand cannabis smoke exposure. We also recommended assigning police officers who report that they are bothered by secondhand cannabis smoke to a work location where potential exposure is believed to be relatively low or nonexistent." - NIOSHTIC-2

    NIOSHTIC no. 20055150

    Recommended citation: NIOSH [2019]. Evaluation of police officers’ exposure to secondhand cannabis smoke at open-air stadium events. By Wiegand DM, Methner MM, Grimes GR. Cincinnati, OH: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, Health Hazard Evaluation Report 2017-0174-3335,

    https://www .cdc.gov/niosh/hhe/reports/pdfs/2017-0174-3335.pdf.

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