Workplace Hygiene Management Training
Workplace hygiene has been defined as “that wisdom and art devoted to the expectation, recognition, evaluation, and control of those environmental factors or stresses arising in or from the site, which may cause sickness, disabled health and well- being, or significant discomfort among workers or among the citizens of the community.”
workplace hygienists use environmental monitoring and logical styles to descry the extent of worker exposure and employ engineering, work practice controls, and other styles to control implicit health hazards.
RECOGNIZING AND CONTROLLING HAZARDS
Workplace hygienists recognize that engineering, work practice, and administrative controls are the primary means of reducing employee exposure to occupational hazards.
Engineering controls minimize employee exposure by either reducing or removing the hazard at the source or isolating the worker from the hazard. Engineering controls include eliminating toxic chemicals and substituting non-toxic chemicals, enclosing work processes or confining work operations, and the installation of general and local ventilation systems.
Work practice controls alter the manner in which a task is performed. Some fundamental and easily implemented work practice controls include (1) changing existing work practices to follow proper procedures that minimize exposures while operating production and control equipment; (2) inspecting and maintaining process and control equipment on a regular basis; (3) implementing good housekeeping procedures; (4) providing good supervision; and (5) mandating that eating, drinking, smoking, chewing tobacco or gum, and applying cosmetics in regulated areas be prohibited.
Administrative controls include controlling employees’ exposure by scheduling production and tasks, or both, in ways that minimize exposure levels. For example, the employer might schedule operations with the highest exposure potential during periods when the fewest employees are present.
EXAMPLES OF HAZARDS
To be effective in recognizing and evaluating on-the-job hazards and recommending controls, industrial hygienists must be familiar with the hazards’ characteristics. Potential hazards can include air contaminants, and chemical, biological, physical, and ergonomic hazards.
These are commonly classified as either particulate or gas and vapor contaminants. The most common particulate contaminants include dusts, fumes, mists, aerosols, and fibers.
are solid particles generated by handling, crushing, grinding, colliding, exploding, and heating organic or inorganic materials such as rock, ore, metal, coal, wood, and grain.
are formed when material from a volatilized solid condenses in cool air. In most cases, the solid particles resulting from the condensation react with air to form an oxide.
The term mist is applied to liquid suspended in the atmosphere. Mists are generated by liquids condensing from a vapor back to a liquid or by a liquid being dispersed by splashing or atomizing. Aerosols are also a form of a mist characterized by highly respirable, minute liquid particles. Fibers are solid particles whose length is several times greater than their diameter, such as asbestos.
are formless fluids that expand to occupy the space or enclosure in which they are confined. They are atomic, diatomic, or molecular in nature as opposed to droplets or particles which are made up of millions of atoms or molecules. Through evaporation, liquids change into vapors and mix with the surrounding atmosphere. Vapors are the volatile form of substances that are normally in a solid or liquid state at room temperature and pressure. Vapors are gases in that true vapors are atomic or molecular in nature.
Harmful chemical compounds in the form of solids, liquids, gases, mists, dusts, fumes, and vapors exert toxic effects by inhalation (breathing), absorption (through direct contact with the skin), or ingestion (eating or drinking). Airborne chemical hazards exist as concentrations of mists, vapors, gases, fumes, or solids.