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Manganese (Mn) is a hard, gray metal that is frequently used in the production of steel. Workers may be harmed from exposure to manganese through the breathing of manganese fumes or dusts. The level of exposure depends upon the dose, duration, and work being done. Continued exposure can damage the lungs, liver, and kidneys. Exposure to manganese dust or fumes can also lead to a neurological condition similar to Parkinson's disease.

Workers most at risk of being exposed to manganese often perform welding tasks. Welding occurs in the construction, manufacturing, transportation, mining, and agriculture industries and other occupations, such as pipe-fitters or millwrights. Somewhat smaller numbers of workers in the metallurgical and other manufacturing industries are also at risk.

On this page you will find resources containing methods of protecting workers from exposure and recommended exposure limits.

  • Fact sheets
    • Airborne Exposure Limit for Manganese
      This factsheet highlights Oregon OSHA’s permissible exposure limit (PEL) for manganese compounds and fumes and describes Oregon OSHA’s manganese rule, which gives employers the option to use two different levels of respiratory protection based on assigned protective factors during common welding and welding-related tasks.
      English  07/21/2022
    • Personal protective equipment
      Details when employers must provide personal protective equipment (PPE) for workers, with an example of a hazard assessment, and descriptions of appropriate PPE for various tasks.
      English  08/24/2023

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