Heavy Metal Accumulation in Dust and Workers’ Scalp Hair as a Bioindicator for Air Pollution from a Steel Factory
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Environmental Sciences Department, College of Science, Salahaddin University, Erbil, Iraq
Zhian Salih   

Environmental Sciences, College of Science, Salahaddin University-erbil, Erbil-Kirkuk road, 964, Erbil, Iraq
Submission date: 2019-02-06
Final revision date: 2019-04-15
Acceptance date: 2019-05-29
Online publication date: 2019-12-16
Publication date: 2020-02-13
Pol. J. Environ. Stud. 2020;29(2):1805–1813
The present study was carried out to detect some heavy metals such as Fe, Cu, Mn, Ni, Cr, Zn, As, Pb, Co and Cd in fallen dust and the scalp hair of workers in a local steel factory, and people dwelling in rural areas 143 km away from the factory within Erbil Province. The study revealed a considerable accumulation of aforementioned heavy metals in dust and the hair of workers in the polluted zones as compared to the unpolluted rural districts. The concentrations of all the metals in the factory exceeded the standard limits of WHO. In a rural area, all metals except Ni are under the restrictions of WHO concentrations. The geo-accumulation index (Igeo) and pollution load index (PLI) values >1 indicated that the area pollution caused by the steel factory ranged from moderate to extreme contamination. The hair of the workers in the scrapyard and around the furnace part of the factory had a significantly higher content of metals compared with other parts of the workplace. A positive correlation was found between the concentration of dust and hair heavy metals. Also, 16 and more years of working showed a higher value of hair metals.