Noise is one of the most widespread environmental pollutants that can cause a number of health issues. In various industries, including rail, it is important to monitor and control environmental noise to ensure noise levels in commercial, industrial and transportation settings comply with the recommendations set by the World Health Organisation (WHO).
Navigating the health and safety legislation surrounding the use of biocides can sometimes be a daunting task, with legal jargon and heavy wording complicating an already testing subject matter. Jon Fielder, technical director for Water Treatment Equipment, Built Environment Services, SOCOTEC, breaks through the noise to decipher what you need to know about the EU Biocidal Products Legislation.
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.
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.
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.
Mick Pratt, commercial director – water, Environment & Safety Services, talks us through his highlights from last month’s Organisational Health Seminar: Minimising Environmental Risk.
James Dodgson, explains how a collaborative approach is key to the effective management of the risks associated with asbestos in soil.