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Media Release - TRISPHOSPHATES RISKS NEED TO BE INVESTIGATED

 

05 Jun 2001


The National Industrial Chemicals Notification and Assessment Scheme (NICNAS) has released its assessment report on chlorinated trisphosphates after concerns were raised about their possible bioaccumulation in humans and the environment.

Trisphosphates are imported into Australia for use as flame retardants or plasticisers in the production of flexible and rigid foams, elastomers and specialist rubber materials, fibreglass resins, industrial paints, surface coatings and sealants.

The chemicals are absorbed through the skin or via inhalation but the report found there is little evidence that these compounds are likely to accumulate in animal tissues. Trisphosphates can be released into the environment during the manufacture or use of products of which they are an ingredient and their disposal.

They are not expected to be persistent in the environment and overall environmental hazards are assessed as low. There is a potential for workers and the public to be exposed to trisphosphates.

The NICNAS report recommends a full risk assessment be carried out because of the identified effects on human health with some trisphosphates and lack of adequate data on others.

The full report can be downloaded from the NICNAS website at the PEC 17 page.
 

About NICNAS

The National Industrial Chemicals Notification and Assessment Scheme (NICNAS) operates under the Commonwealth Industrial Chemicals (Notification and Assessment) Act 1989.

NICNAS is a statutory scheme within the portfolio of the Minister for Health and Ageing. Its approach to the scientific assessment of chemicals covers toxicity, exposure and use to assess the environmental, public health and occupational health and safety risk. For more information see the web site www.nicnas.gov.au
 

Further information

Nick Miller, NICNAS, (02) 8577 8810 or 0407 228 285

 

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