Workplace Air Monitoring Services
From Occupational Hygien
Statistically, ill health represents a greater problem for employers than physical injury. Although 220 workers were killed in the past year and 363,000 seriously injured, up to 2 million people are currently suffering from work-related illness with 576,000 of these reported in the last 12 months.Using chemicals or other hazardous substances at work can put people’s health at risk. Legislation, such as the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations 2002 (COSHH) requires employers to control exposure to hazardous substances to prevent ill health. They must ensure that both employees and others who may be affected by their activities are safe and their exposure controlled.
If you, as an employer, fail to adequately control hazardous substances, your employees could be affected. Effects from hazardous substance exposure can range from mild eye irritation to chronic lung disease or even, in the worst case scenario, a fatality. Workplace air monitoring, such as personal sampling for hazardous substances can be important to complete an adequate assessment or to demonstrate controls measures are still effective. Air monitoring data can also be important when defending against possible employee claims.
Hazardous substances include:
- substances used directly in work activities (e.g. adhesives, paints, cleaning agents)
- substances generated during work activities (e.g. dust fumes from soldering and welding);
- naturally occurring substances (e.g. grain dust);
- biological agents such as bacteria and other micro-organisms
- contamination of buildings, for example mercury or anthrax