Organophosphate flame retardants in the indoor air and dust in cars in Japan

  • Masahiro Tokumura
  • Rurika Hatayama
  • Kouichi Tatsu
  • Toshiyuki Naito
  • Tetsuya Takeda
  • Mohammad Raknuzzaman
  • Md. Habibullah -Al-Mamun
  • Shigeki Masunaga


The concentrations of organophosphate flame retardants (OPFRs) in the indoor air and dust were measured in 25 unoccupied cars in Japan. In the indoor air of the cars, most OPFRs were neither detected nor found at a concentration lower than the method quantification limit. The highest concentration (1500 ng m−3) was obtained for tris(1-chloro-2-propyl) phosphate (TCIPP). By contrast, many OPFRs were detected in the dust samples collected from the interior of the cars. TCIPP and tris(2-ethylhexyl) phosphate (TEHP) were present at the highest concentrations at 390 μg g−1 (in dust from car seats) and 640 μg g−1 (in dust from car floor mats), respectively. The highest median concentrations (35 μg g−1 for car seats, 53 μg g−1 for car floor mats) were obtained for tris(2-butoxyethyl) phosphate (TBOEP). According to the results of our exposure assessment, the typical exposures to OPFRs via inhalation in car cabins ranged from 9.0×10−4 to 7.8×10−1 ng kg-bw−1 day−1. The typical exposures to OPFRs via dust ingestion ranged from 9.2×10−4 to 8.8×10−1 ng kg-bw−1 day−1. We compared these results with the ref-erence doses for OPFRs and found that, based on cur-rent information about the toxicities of OPFRs, exposure to OPFRs in car cabins via inhalation and dust ingestion is unlikely to have adverse human health effects.


Air pollution Car interior air quality Dust ingestion Exposure assessment Flame retardants Risk assessment 



This work was supported by the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) KAKENHI Grant Number 25241023. We would like to thank Ms. Kanako Naito, technical assistant, for technical support.

Supplementary material

10661_2016_5725_MOESM1_ESM.doc (55 kb)
ESM 1 (DOC 55 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of Environment and Information SciencesYokohama National UniversityKanagawaJapan
  2. 2.Graduate School of Environment and Information SciencesYokohama National UniversityKanagawaJapan
  3. 3.Isuzu Advanced Engineering Center, LTD.KanagawaJapan
  4. 4.Department of FisheriesUniversity of DhakaDhakaBangladesh

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