Ski waxing is risky for your health and if you insist on using fluorinated waxes, you best invest in proper protection.
This is the gist of the newly released study conducted by the Norwegian Institute of Public Health.
The study reveals that amateur skiers using ski wax in booths at competitions are being exposed to the similar ( and dangerous) levels of perfluorinated hydrocarbons as professional ski waxers.
The dreaded PFOA or perfluorooctanoate , the most controvercial chemical in the European Union ( comprehensive ban is being discussed but nobody knows how to replace it in electronics’ production and firefighting among other areas) is mentioned in the study:
The levels of PFOA in waxing cabins are “… three orders of magnitude higher than the concentrations found in house dust from Norwegian households…”
Two conclusions are drawn, verbatum:
“…Without further information on exposure conditions or measuring serum concentrations, it is not possible to make a precise health risk assessment related to exposure of amateurs to particulate matter and PFAS…”
“…The results confirm the basis for maintaining previous advice and recommendations on ventilation and protection measures given by the Norwegian Institute of Public Health. It is encouraged that these recommendations are followed, when staying in areas where skis are waxed and prepared. This applies both to facilities provided at competitions and in private booths or basements.
To translate: Norwegian scientists and health authorities strongly recommend you invest in quality respirator. They are not going as far as to say which – but Swix does:
If you’re a Regular waxer, Swix recommends you buy a relatively mundane Sundström Premium plus pack sr 100 for about 50€ plus replaceable filters.
If you’re a Heavy or a Professional waxer, however, you need to invest in something like
Scott Duraflow T-40 powered respirator that is a highly professional tool and would set you back some 1000€
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