Worker safety and disposal information

When removing old wood flooring containing hazardous substances and old adhesive residue, a dust extraction device should be used in all circumstances. Protective gloves made of nitrile or butyl rubber, dust protection suits, and dust masks with proper filter sets are recommended as personal protective equipment. Working with verifiable materials loaded with PAHs is subject to the obligation to report this with the German institution for statutory accident insurance and prevention for the construction industry and the trade supervisory board.

For further information, refer to the recommendations of the Zentralverband Parkett- und Fußbodentechnik (German central association for wood flooring and floor engineering), as well as the following relevant rules and regulations:

  • "Direct skin contact with hazardous substances", TRGS 150 
  • "Decontaminating and working in contaminated areas", TRGS 524 
  • "Pyrolysis products from organic material", TRGS 551 
  • "Rules for health and safety when working in contaminated areas," Institution for statutory accident insurance and prevention for the construction industry, issue 4, 1997, call no 201, ZH 11183 "Construction Site Ordinance," 10th June 1998 
  • "Ordinance on safety and health at building sites," Construction Site Ordinance, 10th June 1998 
  • "Removing wood flooring adhesives containing PAHs", operating instructions in accordance with section 20 of the GEFSTOFFV", GISBAU 7195 
  • "Exposure to polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) in residences with wood flooring," Federal Environment Agency, Press Information, Berlin 27/03/1998 
  • "Recommendations for polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) and their most important ingredient: benzo(a)pyrene," Central association for wood flooring and floor engineering, June 1998 
  • "Handling instructions for removing wooden flooring installed with PAH-based adhesives," Central association for wood flooring and floor engineering, Number 3, September 1998 
  • "PAH under all wood floors," statement from the TKB with suggestions for refurbishing, Parkett magazine 3/98.

The materials contaminated by PAH during refurbishing must be professionally disposed of. However, since this is governed differently by region, the instructions for this should be obtained from municipal authorities and disposal companies. 

The following generally applies for materials exposed to PAH [disposal code]:
Dispose of removed wood flooring with bonded old adhesive residues as "Wood residues with harmful contamination" [15029901] and screeds with bonded old adhesive or swarf as "bitumen residues" [080404]. In some cases with very low PAH concentration, disposal as "construction waste" [170701] is also possible.

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