Posted: 30 Nov '18

Silica Exposure Mitigation: How to Work Safely in the Construction Industry

Workers who engage in a variety of activities including drilling into concrete walls, abrasive blasting with sand, manufacturing brick and ceramic products, as well as crushing stone are highly vulnerable to respirable crystalline silica exposure. It’s important for these workers to think about silica exposure mitigation.

Importance of Mitigating Exposure

Silica is a naturally occurring element found in the earth’s crust. Inhalable silica, which is at least 100 times smaller than the usual beach sand, is usually produced when grinding, crushing cutting, and drilling rock, stone, brick, concrete, mortar, and block. The following are the reasons why silica exposure mitigation is crucial:

  • Prevents risk of serious health complications: Inhaling silica particles puts you at a great risk of developing serious health complications, including lung cancer, kidney disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and silicosis, which is an untreatable lung disease that can result to disability and death. The fact that silica exposure causes serious health problems that are not only costly to treat but also potentially fatal makes silica exposure mitigation very crucial.
  • Improves work environment and boosts productivity: Considerable amounts of dust can lower the visibility in a work environment, resulting in reduced productivity and an increased probability of catastrophe. For these reasons, it’s crucial for a construction company to consider adopting measures that help in dust control and silica exposure mitigation.

Recommended Strategies

Construction employers in Canada are expected by law to provide safe and healthful workplaces for their workers. They must take measures that are focused on silica exposure mitigation to ensure that workers are protected from the risk of exposure to this hazardous substance.

Installing innovative ventilation systems is perhaps the most effective strategy for mitigation. This is because ventilation systems are efficient at capturing and filtering dust, preventing potentially hazardous particulates from circulating in the air.

Besides installing innovative ventilation systems to help with silica exposure mitigation, use of dust suppression and collection tools can also be of great help to construction workers. It’s best to hire experts to perform an on-site inspection to assess your situation and recommend the most ideal ventilation system or dust filtration system for you.

Staying Safe

Putting measures for silica exposure mitigation in place certainly puts employers in the construction industry in a win-win situation. They get to comply with the law that requires them to provide their workers with a safe work environment and in so doing, they greatly enhance working conditions and ultimately boost employee productivity.

Come by today and choose from our wide range of filtration systems designed for silica exposure mitigation so you can create a safe and environmental-friendly workplace.