Occupational Exposure Estimate of Benzene and the Effectiveness of Control Measure in Gabon’s Gasoline Storage and Distribution Facility

Antoine Francis Obame Nguema, Akihiro Tokai, Ibnu Susanto Joyosemito, Naoya Kojima


The processing of petroleum products in gasoline storage and distribution facility for loading operation, has caused the generation of vapor emissions sources. Benzene is one of those vapor emissions that workers are likely to be exposed at high exposure level during conducting out specific tasks such as loading gasoline to various petroleum storage transport modes. This results in many problems on human health such as cancer and non-cancer diseases. However, the estimate of benzene exposure to indicate the control measures has not been fully explored in previous researches. In this study, the occupational exposure estimate of benzene in Gabon’s gasoline storage and distribution facility was investigated by using a quantitative and predictive exposure inhalation model; to estimate benzene concentration before and after applying control measures. The results indicate that the benzene concentrations varied between 9.46 mg/m³ and 187 mg/m³ for short term and has the value of 187 mg/m³ for long term. The implementation of control measures including using vapor recovery system, chemical filter mask and improving worker’s behavior might contribute to significantly reduce benzene concentration to the range of 4.52 – 29.08 mg/m³ for short term and down to 4.55 mg/m³ for long term. This almost meets the Agency Governmental Industrial Hygienists standard, in which occupational exposure limit for short term and long term exposure is 8.1 mg/m³ and 3.16 mg/m³, respectively.


Benzene exposure, Task-level assessment, Control measures, Loading operations, Gasoline storage and distribution facility

Full Text:



Carolyn F. Phillips CF, Robert K. JONES RK. Gasoline vapor exposure during bulk handling operations. American Industrial Hygiene Association Journal. 1978; Volume 39: 1978 - Issue 2/ Pages 118-128.; 04 Jun 2010.

J. Paul Guyer 2014. An Introduction to Petroleum Fuel Facilities: Bulk Fuel Storage Continuing Education and Development, Inc. 9 Grey ridge Farm Court. Stony Point, NY 10980. [3] G.H.Pandya, A.G. Gavane and V.K. Kondawar. Assessment of Occupational Exposure to VOCs at the Gantry Gasoline Terminal. JOURNAL OF ENVIRON. SCIENCE & ENGG. VOL. 48, No. 3, P. 175 -182, July 2006.


IARC (1987). Overall evaluations of carcinogenicity: an updating of IARC Monographs volumes 1 to 42. IARC Monogr Eval Carcinog Risks Hum Suppl, 7: 1–440. PMID:3482203

Ormrat Kampeerawipakorn, Panida Navasumrit, Daam Settachan, Jeerawan Promvijit Potchanee Hunsonti, Varabhorn Parnlob, Netnapa Nakngam, Suppachai Choonvisase, Passaornrawan Chotikapukan, Samroeng Chanchaeamsai, Mathuros Ruchirawat. Health risk evaluation in a population exposed to chemical releases from a petrochemical complex in Thailand. Environmental Research, Volume 152, January 2017, Pages 207-213 https://doi.org/10.1016/j.envres.2016.10.004

Benjamin Edokpolo B, Qiming Jimmy Yu QJ, and Des Connell D. Health risk assessment of ambient air concentrations of benzene, toluene and xylene (BTX) in service station environments. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2014; 11(6), :6354-6374.; http://dx.doi.org/doi:10.3390/ijerph110606354.

. Keretetse G.S., Laubscher P.J., du Plessis J.L., Pretorius P.J., van der Weshuizen F.H., van Dyk E., Eloff F.C., Arde M.N., du Plessis L.H. DNA damage and repair detected by the comet assay in lymphocytes of African petrol attendants: A pilot study. Ann. Occup. Hyg. 2008`; 52:653–662. http://dx.doi:10.1093/annhyg/men047. [PubMed] [CrossRef]

Cheremisinoff and Morresi, 1979; P.N. Cheremisinoff, A.C. Morresi. Benzene, Basic and Hazardous Properties. Marcel Dekker, New York (1979), p. 250. Google Scholar.

Diane Bignoumba; Christophe Gibout. Les enjeux de la gestion du risk environnemental dans la zone de N’toum au Gabon: Cas de l’entreprise CIMGABON. HAL/archives-ouvertes.fr https://tel.archives-ouvertes.fr/tel-01020557 , mardi 8 juillet 2014.

Gabonese Republic. Arrête No. 001072/MMEPRH, Instituant la realization des etudes de dangers pour les installations petrolieres classees, implantees en Republique Gabonaise. 29 Octobre 2007.

R. Cecil, R. J. Ellison. Exposure profile: gasoline. CONCAWE report no. 97/52, Brussels January 97.

Storage and Handling of Petroleum Products at Depots and Terminals Report. 2015, www.oisd.gov.in

Julie M. Panko, Shannon H. Gaffney, Amanda M. Burns. Occupational Exposure to Benzene at the Exxon Mobil Joliet, Illinois, USA (1977-2006). Toxicology and Industrial Health journal, 26(10) 671-690, 2010.

Martie van Tongeren, Judith Lamb, John W Cherrie, Laura Mac Colman, Ioan nis Basinas, Susanne Hesse. Validation of Lower Tier Exposure Tools Used for REACH: Comparison of Tools Estimates With Available Exposure Measurements. Annals of Work Exposures and Health, Volume 61, Issue 8, 1 October 2017, Pages 921–938, https://doi.org/10.1093/annweh/wxx056

Susanne Bredendiek-Kämper. Do EASE Scenarios Fit Workplace Reality? A Validation Study of the EASE Model. Pages 182-187 | Published online: 30 Nov 2010. Download citation https://doi.org/10.1080/104732201460316

M. TISCHER S. BREDENDIEK-KÄMPERU. POPPEK. Evaluation of the HSE COSHH Essentials Exposure Predictive Model on the Basis of BAuA Field Studies and Existing Substances Exposure Data. The Annals of Occupational Hygiene, Volume 47, Issue 7, 1 October 2003, Pages 557–569, https://doi.org/10.1093/annhyg/meg086

Erik Tielemans, Dook Noy, Jody Schinkel, Henri Heussen, Doeke Van Der Schaaf, John West and Wouter Fransman. Stoffenmanager Exposure Model: Development of a Quantitative Algorithm. The Annals of Occupational Hygiene Volume 52, Issue 6Pp. 443-454, 2008. https://doi.org/10.1093/annhyg/men033

Verma DK, Jim A. Julian JA, Gail Bebee G, Wai K. Cheng WK, Holborn K, Shaw L. Hydrocarbon exposures at petroleum bulk terminals and agencies. American Industrial Hygiene Association Journal 1992; 53(10): Pages 645-656, (1992). http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/15298669291360292

Verma DK, Diane M. Johnson DM, M. Lorraine Shaw ML, Karen Des Tombe K. Benzene and Total hydrocarbons exposures in downstream petroleum industries. American Industrial Hygiene Association Journal, 2001;62:176-194 (2001) Pages 176-194. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/15298660108984621

Karen Des Tombe, Dave K. Verma DK, des Tombe K. Measurement of benzene in the workplace and its evolution process, part I: Overview, history, and past methods. Journal American Industrial Hygiene Association Journal 1999; Volume 60: 1999 – Issue-1, Pages38-47. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/00028899908984421

Derek Swick D, Andrew Jacques A, J.C. Walker JC, Herb Estreiche H. Gasoline risk management: a compendium of regulations, standards, and industry practices. Regulatory Toxicology and Pharmacology 2014; 70: (2014) S80-S92. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.yrtph.2014.06.022

Benzene reduction regulation (U.S. EPA, 1990)

Direct infos (l’actualite financieres et economiques du Gabon) https://directinfosgabon.com/le-petrole-2/

Stephen J. Lewis SJ, Gary M. Bell GM, Neil Cordingley N, Eileen D. Pearlman ED, Lesley Rushton L. Retrospective estimation of exposure to benzene in leukaemia case-control study of petroleum marketing and distribution workers in United Kingdom. Occupational and Environmental Medicine 1997; 54:167-175. http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/oem.

John W. Cherrie and Thomas Schneider. Validation of a New Method for Structured Subjective Assessment of Past Concentrations. Annals of occupational Hygiene, 1998. Pages 235–245, https://doi.org/10.1093/annhyg/43.4.235

Dorothea Koppisch, Jody Schinkel, Stefan Gabriel, Wouter Fransman, Erik Tielemans. Use of the MEGA Exposure Database for the Validation of the Stoffenmanager Model. The Annals of Occupational Hygiene, Volume 56, Issue 4, 1 May 2012, Pages 426–439, https://doi.org/10.1093/annhyg/mer097 Published: 07 November 2011 Article history

Hanna E. Landberg, Anna Axmon, Håkan Westberg, Håkan Tinnerberg. A Study of the Validity of Two Exposure Assessment Tools: Stoffenmanager and the Advanced REACH Tool. Ann Work Expo Health (2017) 61 (5): 575-588. https://doi.org/10.1093/annweh/wxx008

Stoffenmanager’, a Web-Based Control Banding Tool Using an Exposure Process Model. Hans Marquart, Henri Heussen, Maaike Le Feber, Dook Noy, Erik Tielemans, Jody Schinkel, John West, Doeke Van, Der Schaaf. The Annals of Occupational Hygiene, Volume 52, Issue 6, 1 August 2008, Pages 429–441, https://doi.org/10.1093/annhyg/men032 Published: 27 June 2008

Stoffenmanager Exposure Model: Development of a Quantitative Algorithm. Erik Tielemans Dook Noy Jody Schinkel, Henri Heussen, Doeke Van, Der Schaaf. John West, Wouter Fransman. The Annals of Occupational Hygiene, Volume 52, Issue 6, 1 August 2008, Pages 443–454, https://doi.org/10.1093/annhyg/men033. Published: 10 July 2008

ERIK TIELEMANS1, THOMAS SCHNEIDER. Conceptual Model for Assessment of Inhalation Exposure: Defining Modifying Factors. Annals of occupational. The Annals of Occupational Hygiene, Volume 52, Issue 7, 1 October 2008, Pages 577–586, https://doi.org/10.1093/annhyg/me

W.S. Irving WS, Thomas G. Grumbles TG. Benzene exposures during gasoline loading at bulk marketing terminals. American Industrial Hygiene Association, J 1979;40:468-736. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/15298667991429840. Toxicology Letters, 52 (1900) 135-139, 1990.

Robert C. Spear RC, Steve Selvin S, Jane Schulman J, and Marcie Francis M. Benzene exposure in the petroleum refining industry. Applied Industrial Hygiene. 1987; VOL. 2: NO. 4. July 1987. Pages 15.

Lauri Saarinen L. Recent development of exposure to gasoline in the distribution chain Lauri Saarinen. Kuopio (Finland): University of Kuopio; 2002. People and Work Research Reports No.:15.

Haji Bahabar, Sara Mostafalou, Mohammad Abdollahi. Current understanding and perspectives on non-cancer health effects of benzene: A global concern. Toxicology and Applied Pharmacology 276(2014) 83-94. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.taap.2014.02.012

Nordlinder R, Ramnas O. EXPOSURE TO BENZENE AT DIFFERENT WORK PLACES IN SWEDEN. The Annals of Occupational Hygiene, Volume 31, Issue 3, 1 January 1987, Pages 345–355, https://doi.org/10.1093/annhyg/31.3.345

Thomas J. Smith TJ, S. Katharine Hammond SK, Otto Wong O. Health effects of gasoline exposure. I. exposure assessment for U.S. Distribution Workers. Environmental Health Perspectives Supplements 1993; 101: (Suppl.6): 13-21. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/08828032.1987.10390543.

T. Kawai, K. Yamaoko, Yoko Uchida and Masayuki Ikeda. Benzene exposure in a Japanese petroleum refinery https://doi.org/10.1016/0378-4274(90)90147-E

DOI: https://doi.org/10.24203/ajas.v6i6.5642


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.