Office laser printers may be as dangerous as cigarettes

Apart from making a lot of noise and breaking down constantly, laser printers have been a blessing to office workers since their conception almost two decades ago. Unfortunately, new findings show their usage may have some harmful effects on us productivity slaves.

According to a team of researchers from Queensland University of Technology, laser printers could be as harmful as cigarettes to those working around them. It seems that active, laser printing devices emit ink particles in the air, and could be harmful if inhaled.

“Ultra-fine particles are of most concern because they can penetrate deep into the lungs, where they can pose a significant health threat,” said Professor Morawska of Queensland University of Technology. “These [printer] particles are tiny like cigarette smoke particles, and when deep inside the lung, they do the same amount of damage.”

She went on to say that the health effects from inhaling the particles can ” depend on particle composition, but the results can range from respiratory irritation to more severe illness such as cardiovascular problems or cancer.”

Personally, this study really came as a shock since I’m working in a closed office with two highly utilized departmental printers. I’m not exactly sure if I should be feeling concerned about the situation. What are your thoughts?

(Via)

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10 Responses to Office laser printers may be as dangerous as cigarettes

  1. So you're saying I shouldn't have my face in the printer while I'm watching my prints come out?

    I wonder what the difference in danger is between a toner based printer and a vegetable ink printer. Though, I'm sure if anything gets in your lungs besides air or water, it's not a good thing.

  2. So you’re saying I shouldn’t have my face in the printer while I’m watching my prints come out?
    I wonder what the difference in danger is between a toner based printer and a vegetable ink printer. Though, I’m sure if anything gets in your lungs besides air or water, it’s not a good thing.

  3. Sounds to me that as long as you don't smoke cigarettes and make copies at the same time your lungs will only be as unhealthy as the rest of the world who commute to work by car, train or bus!

    DS

  4. Sounds to me that as long as you don’t smoke cigarettes and make copies at the same time your lungs will only be as unhealthy as the rest of the world who commute to work by car, train or bus!

    DS

  5. “Personally, this study really came as a shock since I’m working in a closed office with two highly utilized departmental printers. I’m not exactly sure if I should be feeling concerned about the situation. What are your thoughts?”

    Don’t breathe…. what about a study on traveling in a car with the windows up and the “recirculate air” on in bumper to bumper traffic? wonder how bad the air inside a car is moving at 10 to 25mph on a 6 lane highway is, during rush hour…

    but i guess smoking is bad, since that is controlled.

  6. "Personally, this study really came as a shock since I’m working in a closed office with two highly utilized departmental printers. I’m not exactly sure if I should be feeling concerned about the situation. What are your thoughts?"

    Don't breathe…. what about a study on traveling in a car with the windows up and the "recirculate air" on in bumper to bumper traffic? wonder how bad the air inside a car is moving at 10 to 25mph on a 6 lane highway is, during rush hour…

    but i guess smoking is bad, since that is controlled.