Reducing H2S Exposure in Swine Buildings

High levels of H2S can have detrimental effects on both workers and swine. Previous research by the Prairie Swine Centre Inc. (PSCI) indicated that workers are at risk of exposure to potentially hazardous H2S levels when performing manure management tasks, such as pulling manure pit plugs.
calendar icon 12 July 2013
clock icon 2 minute read

prairie swine H2S reporytThe main goal of this project is to develop practical measures that can prevent r reduce worker exposure to high H2S concentration in swine buildings. Three different systems were investigated in separate modules.

Three engineering control measures were developed and tested for effectiveness in protecting swine barn workers from exposure to hydrogen sulfide (H2S) gas during manure handling events.

A remote manure pit plug pulling system allowed the worker to pull the manure pit plug from outside the room, thereby significantly reducing risk of worker exposure to H2S.

A water sprinkling apparatus was also devised, which resulted in 79 per cent reduction of H2S gas concentration under optimal laboratory conditions.

However, the use of a similar system on agitated manure showed the opposite effect. A manure scraper system was installed to remove manure daily from the manure pit of a grower-finisher room.

Preliminary measurements showed that H2S levels were 80 to 96 per cent lower in the scraper room than in a similar room with a conventional pull-plug system.

However, higher ammonia emissions were observed in the scraper room compared to the conventional grower-finisher room.

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