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LEV Assessment: Back to the Shop Floor for Operations Director

Posted by David Gough on 29-Aug-2017 16:30:08

With a degree in Chemistry and a desire to be interacting with people and the practical working environment, David Gough, operations director, Built Environment Services, SOCOTEC, embarked on a progressive career in occupational hygiene over 20 years ago.

Occupational hygiene is all about the recognition, control and management of workplace health risks – from chemicals, biohazards and physical agents such as noise & vibration. Occupational hygienists use science and engineering to control risks to health, by designing out hazards and applying engineering controls to minimise exposures.

In the workplace, exposure to hazardous substances should either be prevented or adequately controlled.  The purpose of an Local Exhaust Ventilation (LEV) system is to control the emission of such substances to the atmosphere as close as possible to the point of source, thereby preventing release into the workplace.  To be effective, LEV must initially be well designed and constructed.  Over time, the performance of systems can deteriorate due to wear, blockage or damage.  Thus, regular inspection and testing is critical to ensure that control of exposure remains adequate, and this is one of the many occupational hygiene services that SOCOTEC provides.

Here, David talks us through the process at a major railway maintenance depot.

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Topics: Built Environment Services, Rail, Occupational Health & Safety, Occupational Hygiene, LEV assessment

Behind the Scenes at a Rail Depot: Keeping the Client Compliant

Posted by David Gilmour on 26-Jul-2017 11:23:56

David Gilmour, business manager, Built Environment Services, SOCOTEC, visited the maintenance depot of a long-term rail client for their monthly depot monitoring assessment, as part of SOCOTEC’s services to keep them compliant. Here, David tells us about his day on site to share what goes on behind the scenes.

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Topics: Built Environment Services, Fuel Testing, Rail, Legionella, Groundwater, Effluent

Mapping Asbestos in Concrete: Laying the Foundations for Safe Building Demolition

Posted by David Birkin on 10-Jul-2017 10:10:07

Until the late 1970s, asbestos was a commonly used building material and, despite its use declining until a total ban was implemented in 1999, its legacy lives on in over 5.5 million buildings in the UK. This can bring a number of challenges when it comes to building demolition, due to the health and safety hazards involved in managing asbestos and asbestos containing materials (ACMs). It is crucial to establish the extent of such substances prior to carrying out any refurbishment or demolition work on a building. 

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Topics: Built Environment Services, Asbestos In Soils, Asbestos, Asbestos Management, asbestos in concrete

Make the Most of Summer on the Rail Network

Posted by David Gilmour on 23-Jun-2017 13:20:07

With the hopes of a bright and sunny British summer just around the corner, David Gilmour, Business Manager, Built Environment Services, SOCOTEC, has put together a summer checklist for all the rail-related tasks that are ideal for completing during the mild weather.

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Topics: Environmental Monitoring, Fuel Testing, Rail, drainage surveys

No Need to Compromise on Resource Efficiency When It Comes to Water Treatment

Posted by Mick Pratt on 16-Jun-2017 13:08:14

This article first appeared in the June issue of Building Services and Environmental Engineer (BSEE) Magazine.

Mick Pratt, commercial director, Water, Built Environment Services, SOCOTEC, explores how duty holders of commercial and other public buildings can ensure water systems in their care not only meet safety requirements but also boost resource efficiency. 

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Topics: Water, Water Systems, Ozone, Water Management, water treatment

Training is key to top-notch asbestos management

Posted by Denis Morgan on 13-Jun-2017 16:38:01

Despite being banned in 1999, asbestos is still widespread across the UK built environment. Asbestos containing materials (ACMs), such as old ceiling tiles, plasterboard and wall insulation, may still be present in buildings - particularly those built before the late 1970s. Meanwhile, traces of the substance may be found in remnants of paints and other coatings after the original ACM has been removed, or even in soils after the building has been demolished.

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Topics: Asbestos In Soils, Asbestos, Asbestos Management, asbestos training

Metallurgy Testing to Keep the Rail Network Running at Full Steam

Posted by Tim Norman on 31-May-2017 14:13:46

Tim Norman, principal materials consultant, Infrastructure Services, explores how metallurgical investigation and testing can help rail operators ensure they not only offer a safe rail service for passengers, but minimise future maintenance requirements too.

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Topics: Health & Safety, Materials Testing, Rail

Day Two Exhibiting at AQE

Posted by Zoe Cooper on 25-May-2017 14:50:59

With a seminar on Controlling and Monitoring Emissions on Waste Management Sites to kick-start the second morning of AQE, Zoe Cooper, business development director, Energy & Waste, SOCOTEC, is the ideal person to report back on her day representing ESG on the stand.

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Topics: Air Quality, Energy & Waste Services, Air Testing, Air Monitoring

Attendance at Air Quality and Emissions Show

Posted by Trevor Worrall on 24-May-2017 16:43:25

SOCOTEC has a long history of testing air quality and emissions, providing a wide range of monitoring and analytical services across the UK. With the Air Quality and Emissions Show taking place today and tomorrow, Trevor Worrall, business development manager, Air Quality and Emissions, SOCOTEC, was on stand providing advice on air quality monitoring and testing.

With the Emissions conference taking place as part of today’s event, it was the right time for us to catch up with Trevor to find out what had been discussed.

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Topics: Air Quality, Air Testing, Stack Emissions, Air Monitoring

Asbestos Throughout the Ages

Posted by James Dodgson on 19-May-2017 13:50:52

At its very peak in 1973, 183,000 tonnes of asbestos were imported into the UK. However, while we commonly associate the use of asbestos with building materials in the 20th Century, we can actually trace its use back to 3000 BC, when asbestos cloth was used to protect the embalmed bodies of Egyptian Pharaohs.

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Topics: Asbestos

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