Work Environment Hazards

Preventing Work Environment Hazards: Keep the Air Clean

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Work Environment HazardsThe air in many work environments has contaminants that can make people sick. People involved in welding, grinding, brazing, sanding, powder coating, machining, and metalworking are at higher risk of developing health problems because of the poor air quality in their workplaces.

Common contributors to poor air quality

Chemical contaminants are some of the most common particulates that bring air quality in work environments down. According to the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, many of these contain volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Cleaning agents, wall covers, adhesives, caulks, sealants, paints, stains, varnishes, carpets, vinyl flooring, fabric materials, furniture, aerosol products (such as air fresheners), as well as fuel and combustion products  have these VOCs.

What these VOC-containing materials do to a person’s health

The United States Environmental Protection Agency warns the public of the many different adverse health effects of VOC-containing materials. These may cause irritation of the eyes, nose, and throat. Some people may experience nausea, headaches, poor coordination, and central nervous system damage. Some are even cancerous.

Continued and long-term exposure to VOCs can lead to the development of many symptoms, including headaches, nose and throat pain/discomfort, conjunctival irritation, skin allergies (or allergic reactions), nausea, dizziness, and fatigue among many others.

What business owners and managers should do

There are plenty of ways to control the amount of these hazardous compounds and actually minimize them. mentions the use of dust collection booths as one method. These play major roles in keeping air quality in work environments safe for everyone, particularly workers exposed to these compounds on a daily basis.

Dust control booths provide a means to efficiently and effectively control contaminants in the air. These can filter and contain fine to medium contaminants, such as cement, composites, wood, metal, fiberglass, toner, dry powder, hexavalent chromium, aluminum, lead, natural stone, plastics, and stainless steel.

Poor air quality is a big problem in many industries. Keeping your work environment clean should be a priority of business owners and managers.


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