AN EVALUATION OF THE POSSIBLE HEALTH RISKS OF RECYCLED RUBBER GRANULES USED AS INFILL IN SYNTHETIC TURF SPORTS FIELDS
ECHA has evaluated the human health risks from substances found in recycled rubber granules that are used as an infill material in synthetic turf, such asthat used inoutdoor and indoor football fields.
In the EU, rubbergranules used as an infill material are mainly produced from end-of-life tyres (ELT). Industry has informed ECHA that most of thisinfill material ismade from EU-produced tyres. The quantity of tyres and recycled rubber granules imported into the EUis reported to be small. However, ECHA cannot verifythis informationfrom an independent source.
ECHA has identified a number of hazardous substances in recycled rubber granules from the literature and from the results of several recent studies. Substances commonly present in recycled rubber granules are polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), metals, phthalates, volatile organic hydrocarbons (VOCs) and semi-volatile organichydrocarbons (SVOCs).
ECHA has investigated the risks to children playing football and other sports on synthetic sports fields (including goalkeepers),adults playing professional sports and workers installing or maintaining the fields. ECHA has considered exposure to rubber granules by skin contact, ingestion and inhalation of substances evaporating from the granules, as well as dust formed by the granules themselves.
ECHA has found no reason to advise people against playing sports on synthetic turf containing recycled rubber granules as infill material. This advice is based on ECHA’s evaluation that there is a very low level of concern from exposure to substances found in the granules. This is based on the current evidence available. However, due to the uncertainties, ECHA makesseveral recommendationsto ensure that any remainingconcerns are eliminated.
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