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propane buffers indoors

blu3reeblu3ree Veteran
edited September 2013 in General Banter
so i work nights at a grocery store and the floors get buffed by a propane buffer its all indoors and the store is not very well ventilated as you can see dust or whatever cleaning solution propane buffers use flying up into the air and staying there for around 10-20 minutes. i can feel the dust from the buffer in my lungs and can feel how congested they are.

my question is are there any health specifically lung ailments propane buffers used indoors can cause?

also if there are any lung ailments caused by them are there any lawsuits looking out for the workers whom breathe that night in and night out?
i see they dish out carbon monoxide which is poisonous.

Comments

  • karastikarasti Breathing Minnesota Moderator
    edited September 2013
    You could opt to look out for yourself rather than just seeking class action lawsuits. Request your employer provide masks while the floor cleaner is working, or bring your concerns and experience up with upper management (and if nothing happens there, just go up the ladder). Perhaps also express concern for the floor cleaner who is standing in the thicke of the noxious chemicals all night. Lots of stuff is kicked up, from dust, to floor polisher, and probably even parts of the material used to buff the floor. You inhale them, and even if they aren't actually poisonous materials, they can clog your lungs. A mask will stop that from happening.

    Any chemical exposure on a regular basis (or high doses on a single basis) can be harmful to people, especially those with sensitive lungs to begin with.

    Your job is required by law to give information to employees at risks and proper use of any type of chemicals. You can ask a manager or HR for the information, but because you are not the operator it's possible you aren't legally entitled to the information. If you really want it, you can go to OSHA to get it. It's quite possible they are supposed to be providing masks anyhow. Also, a lot of those rules only apply to companies of a certain size so depending if you work for a chain or not they might be exempt.
  • karasti said:

    You could opt to look out for yourself rather than just seeking class action lawsuits. Request your employer provide masks while the floor cleaner is working, or bring your concerns and experience up with upper management (and if nothing happens there, just go up the ladder). Perhaps also express concern for the floor cleaner who is standing in the thicke of the noxious chemicals all night. Lots of stuff is kicked up, from dust, to floor polisher, and probably even parts of the material used to buff the floor. You inhale them, and even if they aren't actually poisonous materials, they can clog your lungs. A mask will stop that from happening.

    Any chemical exposure on a regular basis (or high doses on a single basis) can be harmful to people, especially those with sensitive lungs to begin with.

    Your job is required by law to give information to employees at risks and proper use of any type of chemicals. You can ask a manager or HR for the information, but because you are not the operator it's possible you aren't legally entitled to the information. If you really want it, you can go to OSHA to get it. It's quite possible they are supposed to be providing masks anyhow. Also, a lot of those rules only apply to companies of a certain size so depending if you work for a chain or not they might be exempt.

    yeah they may be exempt its a spartan brand store which is a pretty big brand but its a small chains of stores only 2 bueches exist. thanks for the advice im definatly gunna be asking my manager about masks.
  • DavidDavid some guy Veteran
    Masks could help for the next bit but a long term solution could actually get you a raise.

    If it's all indoors anyways, wouldn't it be more cost effective in the long run to get electrical buffers? And that's besides safetys' sake.

    Propane floor buffers sounds like an accident waiting to happen.

    I used to do midnights taking care of the floors in a four rink hockey arena and the one electrical floor buffer I used for the whole place never once had to be replaced or repaired in the three years I used it.







  • karastikarasti Breathing Minnesota Moderator
    The problem isn't with the propane, it's with what is put on the floors to shine them and the dust that rises that contains particles from the buffer and the floor chemicals.
  • DavidDavid some guy Veteran
    edited September 2013
    Oh sorry, I guess I'm still half asleep.

    I can't remember what we used but the stripper was environmentally friendly and applied with a mop. The wax and gunk were then mopped up as well.

    The buffing itself shouldn't put anything into the air because that's how you get the shine... Putting particles in the air to come back down is not really condusive to a good shine, lol.
  • DavidDavid some guy Veteran
    edited September 2013
    Plus if we're talking about carbon monoxide, that's the propane buffers.

    Even when using abrasive disks to get the bad areas, the floor should be wet so dust particles doesn't seem like too much of a concern. If there are back floaty things, that's the propane.

    @blu3ree, you guys really want electric buffers, trust me.

  • karastikarasti Breathing Minnesota Moderator
    it kind of depends on the area you are working with. In big stores with all sorts of displays and shelving units, no matter how well you clean there is always dust in the store, so when a big machine is going around, it kicks up the dust, as well as small particles of the buffer pad itself. You notice that after a certain time using them, the pads have to be replaced. Just like with towels you own, every time you wash and dry them, they lose little bits of the fabric (thus all the lint). Buffer pads are the same, except they aren't made out of cotton. They are made out of chemicals, and when they are used, tiny little bits of them come off the pad and get mixed in with the dust.
  • well im pretty sure that the owners of the store dont care about any of that as we are usuing a 10+ year old scrubber its some 1980s model all they want is to make money from the store. it is after all a spartan store and anyone familiar with spartan knows that they sell for the most part chemicals in a can.
  • DavidDavid some guy Veteran
    In that case, your efforts would be better spent looking for a new job instead of fighting policy, no?

    I wouldn't want to buy my food from a company that is known for selling chemicals in a can...
  • blu3reeblu3ree Veteran
    edited September 2013
    i cant its a small town and i do not own a car it is only temporary. id like to eventually work at whole foods or something. i dont work there by choice it only pays 7.90 and if you dont work your ass off then you dont get any hours plus its night shift.
  • vinlynvinlyn Colorado...for now Veteran
    If I had to choose between my health and moving out of a small town, I'd move.
  • vinlyn said:

    If I had to choose between my health and moving out of a small town, I'd move.

    its a big step and i dont know where to start.
  • vinlynvinlyn Colorado...for now Veteran
    edited September 2013
    I have confidence in you. After all, a few days ago you were telling everyone how easy it was to switch over to all green farming.

    But on a more serious note, when I got out of college I moved out of my small town to the Maryland suburbs of D.C., later to the Virginia burbs of D.C., later to Bangkok, Thailand (as did Tom), and later to Colorado. I have no idea what your skills or education are, so I can't be specific, but there are options out there for people who have the wear-withal to go for it.
  • @vinlyn high school diploma 2 years of eingineering in high school and emerging technology. where i learned to wire circuit boards, breadboarding, CATIA, robotics, alternative energies, electrical, and i built my own water turbine. (which it is actually very easy to make any type of turbine all you need is copper wire magnets and some kind of way for the wire to pass over the magnets hooking it up to something is a little more complicated)

    its not hard to have all green farming provided the "money" and or the materials are there and you can do the work yourself. theres enough diy on youtube for whomever is interested to do their research almost exclusively on it.
  • vinlynvinlyn Colorado...for now Veteran
    So no community college degree?
  • blu3reeblu3ree Veteran
    edited September 2013
    nope.
  • vinlynvinlyn Colorado...for now Veteran
    Hmmmmmmm. That makes it more difficult. Do you have relatives in any larger community with more job opportunities?
  • blu3reeblu3ree Veteran
    edited September 2013
    i have no idea i dont know much of my family. id be comfortable living on 10+ dollars an hour if room and food arent included with 30+hours a week.
  • vinlynvinlyn Colorado...for now Veteran
    I wish I had some suggestions for you. You seem like a nice fellow.
  • Where is the work going on for young folks? In Canada young people from all over are heading up to the oil patch to strike it rich, and are succeeding.
    When I was young kids would head out west to get into logging and fishing. That's how I got my start. Without a post secondary education, it's going to be physical labour, which is fine.
    What about Alaska? There must be opportunities up there for young men.
  • vinlynvinlyn Colorado...for now Veteran
    Too bad, blu3ree, you live in such a small town. In cities a good opportunity for someone like you would be a home health aide. It doesn't require any previous training. The companies train you. I had one for 6 days after surgery. He earned $175 per day.
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