Baseline Survey Simulator
As a service to the industrial safety and hygiene community, Exposure Assessment Solutions, Inc. has developed and released as freeware the Baseline Survey Simulator Version 2. The Baseline Survey Simulator was designed solely for educational purposes, to simulate and illustrate how different exposure sampling strategies may perform in actual exposure scenarios.
The Baseline Survey Simulator program generates artificial exposure measurements, which are then run through five different decision logics. These decision logics approximate the decision process for the following five industrial hygiene professionals:
- An OSHA inspector, who conducts audits and is required to consider acceptable any measurement that is equal to or less than the PEL
- A plant IH who recommends that the company adopt the least complicated strategy permitted by the OSHA 6b (single substance) regulations
- A corporate IH who believes that the AIHA exposure assessment model is superior to the legal minimum requirements
- A consultant (Consultant A) who agrees with the corporate IH that the AIHA model is superior to a simple inspection procedure or a 6b type strategy for assessing exposures, but that the lower TLV® should be used as it represents a state-of-the art assessment of the risk associated with exposure to this particular substance
- A consultant (Consultant B) who has bought into the false notion that nearly all 8-hour TWA exposure limits can be interpreted by the employer as the upper limit for a worker’s long-term, lifetime average exposure; consequently single overexposures are unimportant; all that matters is that the mean exposure be maintained at or below the exposure limit (whether it is a TWA PEL or TWA TLV® or TWA WEEL®).
So, we have five different strategies, or views regarding:
- Which exposure limit is appropriate for the employer to adopt
- How many exposure measurements should be collected
- How these measurements should be analyzed (i.e., the application of simple decision rules or a statistical analysis)
- How the exposure data or the statistics should be interpreted relative to the OEL
Given these different strategies, the questions to be addressed with the BS Simulator are:
- Which strategies tend to be more reliable in detecting a poorly controlled work environment (a red light decision)?
- Which strategies are least sensitive (consistently yielding a green light decision), despite a high percentage of overexposures?