Are you looking after your respiratory health on site?
Most of us probably associate staying safe on site with wearing a high-vis and hard hat. However, taking the proper precautions to ensure respiratory health isn’t compromised is vitally important for construction workers.
Dust is a big problem for construction workers if it makes its way into the lungs. It’s produced by tasks including cutting, grinding, pouring, and mixing – all in a day’s work! For contractors and applicators who spend all day doing these jobs, it’s important to take the risks into account.
Over time, breathing large amounts of any dust can cause serious lung diseases such as chronic bronchitis and emphysema. There are also dusts which are more likely to be found on site – such as silica dust or wood dust – that can cause specific lung conditions. Silica is found in large amounts in most rocks, sand and clay, and in products such as granite and concrete. Much of this dust is fine enough to be inhaled deeply into the lungs. Exposure to this particular type of dust over many years can cause serious lung diseases including fibrosis, silicosis, and lung cancer.
What can you do to keep yourself and those around you safe on site?
Making sure you have adequate ventilation is an absolute must. If you’re working in a space with bad ventilation, use an M-Class dust extraction unit to minimise dust levels in the air.
When pouring/mixing dusty materials, or carrying out any other jobs on site, always wear a face mask over your nose and mouth. You should also always wear appropriate eye protection, as dust particles can cause sight issues as well as respiratory ones.