Industrial processes give rise to many different airborne hazards within the workplace, either as a direct result of the manufacturing process or by indirect activities such as Diesel Engine Exhaust Emissions (DEEE) from forklift trucks.
It is an employer’s responsibility to ensure that the risk to workers posed by airborne hazards to assessed and if necessary controlled.
Environmental Efficiency have a long experience of helping our clients achieve compliance with respect to air borne hazards within the wok environment through our professionally qualified staff. All our staff who undertake these assessments are certified by the British Occupational Hygiene Society (BOHS).
Workplace Air Assessment involve the identification of hazards through communication with the client, also a preliminary site visit may be necessary in order to understand the client’s processes, where upon a proposal detailing the assessment will be issued. A site visit to conduct the assessment will be necessary, which will involve the placing sampling equipment either on personnel and at static locations.
Following this, the samples will be analysed, results calculated and a full interpretive report will be issued detailing the results and their compliance with the Occupational Emission Limit Values (OELV) set out in the 2018 Code of Practice for the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work (Chemical Agents) Regulations 2001 (S.I. No. 619 of 2001) for Ireland or the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (COSHH) Regulations 2013 for the UK.
Recommendations will also be given on what controls should be put in place to achieve compliance and the overall protection of workers.
Types of airborne hazards that may exist in the place may include:
- Inhalable and respirable Dust; this may take the form of wood dust, general dust from warehouses and paper dust.
- Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs); this is typically from solvent usage either from the process directly (e.g. printing activities, spray painting) or in the use of cleaning, it may also result from the use of organic acids or fuelling activities.
- Isocyanates; this group of compounds is typically involved in the manufacture of medical devices and is also used in spray painting.
- Diesel Engine Exhaust Emissions (DEEE); this is typically caused by forklift trucks on site.
- Asbestos; This is a concern for old buildings where renovation works are being conducted or there is a cause that asbestos containing materials have been disturbed.
- Welding Fumes; This is fast becoming a primary cause for concern in the steel industry for the protection of workers due to the serious nature of the health impacts caused by improper controls in place.