MRO Magazine

Report finds toxic heavy metals can be in laundered rental shop towels

Roswell, GA -- Something as common as a rental shop towel can raise a health and safety issue for workers, accordin...


Health & Safety

September 13, 2007
By MRO Magazine
MRO Magazine

Roswell, GA — Something as common as a rental shop towel can raise a health and safety issue for workers, according to an independent study.

The study results are summarized in a report from Kimberly-Clark Professional, which can be obtained by visiting www.wypall.com/whatsinyourshoptowel.

The study revealed that ‘clean’ shop towel samples tested contained elevated levels of toxic heavy metals. According to the study, rental shop towels can retain measurable levels of heavy metals such as lead, cadmium and antimony even after washing.

The study also found that it is possible for the metals to travel from rental shop towels to the hands of workers and, ultimately, the mouth. Using just 2.5 towels a day, workers may ingest unacceptable amounts of toxic heavy metals, according to the study, which was conducted by Gradient Corp., Cambridge, MA.

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The amount of lead that someone might accidentally ingest from the shop towels may exceed California Environmental Protection Agency (CalEPA) Proposition 65 limits (based on 2.5 towels per day).