Air Sampling – Can your workforce breathe easy?

Airborne contaminents12,000* workers die each year from an occupational related lung disease. These can be linked to past exposure to airborne dust, fume, chemical and liquid mists in the work place. Air sampling can help you to protect your staff.

As a business you have a legal obligation to adhere to COSHH guidelines on a workers safe level of exposure to substances hazardous to health. Called the Workplace Exposure Limit (WEL) these vary depending on the particular contaminant the worker is potentially exposed to.

WEL’s are British occupational exposure limits and are set in order to help protect the health of workers. WEL’s are the maximum levels of concentrations of hazardous substances in the air that the worker may be exposed to, averaged over a specified period of time, referred to as a time-weighted average (TWA). Published in EH40 -workplace exposure limits, a document available free of charge from the HSE website.

An effective LEV system and correct PPE should be keeping your workplace dust and fume free and your staff well protected but it’s often necessary to undertake ‘Air Sampling’ in the working environment and near a worker’s breathing zone to ensure the air they are breathing is indeed below the WEL .

Personal Air Sampling

Dustcheck are an industry leading manufacturer of Dust Control equipment and LEV systems. Our Servicing and Aftermarket division also offer LEV testing and personal and static gravimetric air sampling. This is an accurate method to measure the concentration of airborne contaminants within your workplace. Static tests are conducted in and around the work area whereas Personal Air Sampling happens close to your worker’s airway; a method of testing for airborne substances that may be inhaled when a worker undertakes a particular task.

Coupled with a thorough examination and test of your LEV equipment, samples are collected using specialist equipment and tested in laboratories to enable us to offer you a comprehensive ‘Occupational Exposure to Substances’ report on the quality of your workplace air. We will outline dangers your workforce may be exposed to and make recommendations on how you can improve your working environment.  

Protecting your personnel is a high priority for any business. Last year 200-300* new cases of occupational asthma were diagnosed, contributing to the £9.7 billion* annual cost of new cases of work-related ill health.

The RPS GroupRPS Meeting Air Sampling have been in to Dustcheck this week to meet with some of our Aftermarket Team and member of Filtermist’s Servicing Team on the latest in Air Sampling ensuring we’re always up to date with new technologies and methods of testing.  

All Dustcheck engineers are currently trained to service and test Dustcheck and other manufacturers Dust Control equipment. Since the acquisition by Filtermist – we have begun to share resource with our sister company and engineers from all divisions are being up-skilled to also be able to offer service inspections of equipment offered by the whole group including oil mist filters, LEV and dust control equipment. 

Benefits of an effective LEV System

An effective LEV system will not only protect your operators from harmful dust but will also:

  • Prevent explosions (where volatile dusts are present) when ATEX rated systems are installed
  • Reduce housekeeping and minimise breakdowns by preventing dust from clogging machinery and making the working environment easier and safer to clean
  •  Improve product quality by preventing cross contamination
  • Protect the environment by meeting EPA regulations and managing the quality of air being returned to atmosphere

Safe Change Facility

Other ways of reducing exposure of the workforce to hazardous materials is to use HEPA filters to reduce emissions of the cleaned air to very low levels and to provide the facility to change filter media without coming into contact with the particular dust.

We offer a wide range of filter cartridge and bag materials so are able to handle any product whether it is sticky, cohesive or extremely fine. This includes HEPA rated medias to H14 class and also solutions to provide resistance against hydrolysis, temperature, moisture, PH levels, etc.

Some of our dust extraction equipment can also be manufactured with the safe change facility for changing filter cartridges. Using a disposable collection bag, this places a barrier between the worker and the contaminated cartridge so your work force does not come into contact with any particularly dangerous dusts when servicing the machine.

(*HSE statistics 2017)