UV Radiation exposure among off-shore petroleum workers in Western Australia: A pilot study
Safety Institute of Australia Ltd.
School of Exercise, Biomedical and Health Sciences / School of Exercise and Health Sciences / Occupational Health Research Group
There is strong evidence to suggest that prolonged exposure to ultra violet radiation (UVR) can increase the development of melanoma. With minimal protection against sun and concomitant UVR reflection from the ocean surface, offshore platform workers are highly exposed. To quantify UVR exposure among petroleum workers during spring in accord with the universal UVR index scale, five Integrated Ratings workers and five Roustabout workers on a petroleum platform wore a personal UVR data logger throughout their work shift. An additional logger was placed in direct sunlight through the day to serve as a control. The Integrated Ratings and Roustabout workers did not receive (P<0.05) the maximum potential UVR exposure as measured by the control. Mean UVR exposure values between groups were different (P<0.05) with Roustabouts receiving greater UVR exposures. Mean control UVR index values were 11 while mean Integrated Ratings and Roustabouts UVR index levels were 6 and 9 respectively. Although workers perform their respective jobs within a limited work area, lower quanta of UVR was measured for both groups compared to the control; however, the risk of extreme exposure is possible. Therefore, vigilance to UVR exposure and protection is necessary amongst all groups especially in the summer months.