Following the launch of the Health and Safety Executive’s (HSE) ‘DustBuster’ campaign, aimed at tackling occupational lung disease caused by construction dust and other hazardous substances, Mary Cameron, occupational hygiene team leader at SOCOTEC, takes a closer look at the initiative and how you can ensure compliance.
Up until its ban in 1999, asbestos was used widely for its insulating and fire resistant properties - with use in the rail industry no exception. Buildings in the rail sector as well as the train rolling stock were – and continue to be - commonplace for asbestos containing materials.
Unknown materials and substances found on-site, in products, or during processing can be a major cause for concern. Being able to effectively and precisely identify them enables public and private sector organisations such as corporations, police, hospitals and councils to take action to prevent risk.
Paul Walker, senior development specialist at SOCOTEC, takes us through the processes of a chemical investigation, to show how we move from the unknown to the known.
Cheap, durable and flexible with excellent insulation and fireproofing agents, asbestos was used extensively throughout the 1900s until its ban in 1999. Due to its popularity, asbestos containing materials (ACMs) can still be found in a wide range of locations, including those you may not even think of.
With extensive experience, our asbestos surveyors know that the locations of asbestos are not always in the obvious places. In our second blog on the subject, Sebastian Lawniczak, project manager for asbestos, identifies some of the hidden locations of asbestos that he has come across.
Various activities undertaken at industrial sites can pose a potential environmental risk to that site or the surrounding environment. Commonly, previous occupants of a site or neighbouring premises can significantly impact on the contamination levels present in the land.
Through their site operations, processes and material management, land can become contaminated with a variety of pollutants including hydrocarbons, heavy metals, process chemicals and asbestos containing materials. Careful environmental management and monitoring is fundamental to ensure the site is of a satisfactory state with regard to minimising any impact on human health or the wider environment.
The effects of climate change are hitting the headlines as we continue into our fourth month of high temperatures. Warm weather and hot summer holidays, quite naturally, see an increased use of many water applications. Air conditioning units and associated cooling towers, for example, are in greater demand in the summer, swimming pools are visited more frequently, and hose pipes are pulled out of hibernation for a summer of use.
While many are enjoying the warmest summer for many years, duty holders and responsible persons must be aware of the heightened – and hidden – risk of Legionella in water sources and systems.
Managing environmental pollution is a legal requirement, part of your corporate responsibility and a cost-saving opportunity for businesses too. Trade effluent and discharging waste water can be a costly necessity for organisations, but correctly managing and monitoring your industrial waste water can save money and minimise your impact on the environment.
The business case for occupational hygiene interventions is strong and convincing. So why are hundreds of thousands of people in the UK still made ill by their work each year?
Mary Cameron, occupational hygiene team leader, SOCOTEC, discusses the potential reasons behind poorly implemented occupational health strategies and how companies should be looking to overcome them in a bid for a healthy workforce and improved company performance.
With the HSE estimating that at least 5,000 people die every year from an asbestos-related cancer caused by exposure to asbestos fibres at work, raising awareness about asbestos exposure is still – if not more - as important now as ever before.
IOSH’s campaign aims to encourage organisations to:
- better understand the risks
- demonstrate good practice
- commit to introducing new policies and practices to manage the risks associated with carcinogens at work.
With this in mind, there were a number of key messages raised in the ORR’s health programme update to help rail and road users. Our asbestos technical manager, Denis Morgan, has provided further guidance to help your understanding of how best to manage asbestos. There really is no time to lose.
Exposure to radiation is a potential from many different sources; x-rays are one example of ionising radiation, with transmissions from the TV and radio an example of lower-frequency non-ionising radiation.