The analytical determination of hemoglobin adducts was used as an effective biomonitoring tool after a fire outbrake at a chemical plant close to Cologne/Germany in 2008. More than 1000 people (e.g. fire-men, police officers, and workers) were potentially exposed to acrylonitrile and ethylene. Air monitoring in the surrounding was performed, and acrylonitrile was measured in concentrations up to 20 ppm, the mean value being 7 ppm (time range: 8 h). As many people were concerned about their individual body burden, biomonitoring was recommended for all people involved. 816 persons took advantage of this opportunity and came for blood sampling to the occupational health department of our company. Regarding the lifespan of erythrocytes up to 3 months, it was possible to analyze hemoglobin adducts of acrylonitrile and ethylene during and after the accident. In case of acrylonitrile the hemoglobin adduct N-(2-cyanoethyl) valine and regarding ethylene, N-(2-hydroxyethyl) valine was determined. As a result, the body burden was in nearly all cases within our internal adduct reference values (CyEtVal<15 μg/L blood or <612 pmol/g globin; HyEtVal<15 μg/L blood or 646 pmol/g globin). In about 1% of the cases, the adduct concentrations were slightly above these reference values. This means that the body burden measured by biomonitoring turned out to be far lower than the one expected from the air data. Therefore, following chemical incidents, in case biomonitoring is meaningful, it is highly recommended beside of air monitoring.