Primary Metal Manufacturer
An air sampling survey performed by a non-industrial hygienist indicated that there was an overexposure to graphite dust and recommended corrective actions including ventilation for the process. A review of the report revealed that the sampling had not been done properly and that the wrong occupational exposure limits had been referenced. The exposures were resampled using the appropriate sampling techniques and no overexposures were found using the appropriate exposure limits. The result: no further ventilation controls or work practices changes were needed, saving the employer money. Industrial Hygiene Sciences has the experience to select the proper sampling methods and applicable exposure limits to assist employers in focusing their time and resources on exposures that truly need control.
Wood Products Manufacturer
The employer had recently switched solvents used in a surface cleaning operation. The odor of the solvent was different from the one used previously and employees were concerned that the new solvent was harmful. Air sampling was conducted to assess the exposures. The results indicated that while the exposure levels were over the odor threshold for the solvent, the concentrations were well below the applicable occupational exposure limits which are based on preventing adverse health effects. Although the airborne exposures were acceptable, an issue with dermal exposure to the solvent was identified, resulting in selection of a different protective glove. Industrial Hygiene Sciences can provide you with information to help you assure employees that exposures are adequately controlled demonstrating your concern for their well-being.
A concrete products manufacturer installs their products in commercial and residential structures during the construction process. Since the employees work away from the production facility, their exposures are not as well observed and controlled. During the installation process, employees grind the concrete, creating dust exposure. Air sampling for respirable silica indicated that the employee was overexposed and observations showed that the respiratory protection used by the employee was inadequate. Information on tool equipped ventilation to control dust at the source was provided. OSHA has a Special Emphasis Program directed at employers, including those in the construction industry and the probability of inspection is higher than usual. Failure to address this exposure could lead to substantial regulatory fines and increase the chances that employees could suffer from silicosis, a serious and expensive occupational disease. In addition, uncontrolled exposures could expose other subcontractors working in the area, opening up other unwanted liabilities. Industrial Hygiene Sciences can help you identify exposures, assist in finding ways to reduce employee exposures and reduce the potential regulatory and legal liabilities associated with uncontrolled exposures.
A non-ferrous and stainless steel foundry produces castings made of hundreds of different alloys and needed to improve their outdated Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDSs). They did not want a complicated MSDS preparation and management system and but want their MSDSs to be easily accessible to customers. Working with the safety director and metallurgists, a system to organize the hundreds of different alloys into manageable categories was developed. Using this system, the MSDS were prepared in a format that allowed the foundry to upload them to their website for customer access, greatly reducing the need to manually fax and respond to the many MSDS inquiries they received. In the past, there were many errors in the information on the MSDSs because they were not prepared by someone with experience in the area of industrial hygiene and toxicology. Industrial Hygiene Sciences can prepare accurate MSDSs that clearly communicate the hazards associated with products and reference the current applicable exposure limits, helping you meet your customer's needs for good information about your products and meet regulatory requirements.
Agricultural Products Manufacturer
The employer requested an evaluation of total dust exposure in a dry material bagging operation. During the sampling visit, additional areas of the operation were evaluated and this included a review of the MSDSs for the other products packaged in the facility. Another product was found to contain crystalline silica. The process was not of great concern to the employer since it is not run every day but in reviewing the operation, the potential for large dust exposures seemed possible and the employer agreed to evaluate the process. Sampling in this area found an overexposure to crystalline silica. Overexposures to silica can lead to silicosis, a serious respiratory disease that could result in expensive workers compensation claims and suffering for affected employees. Changes in work practices and some ventilation upgrades were advised to reduce employee exposures. Industrial Hygiene Sciences has the knowledge and experience to identify exposures that are not always obvious but may present a significant hazard to employees.
Workers Compensation Insurance Company
A claims representative requested assistance in reviewing a respiratory disease claim. The employee worked in a foundry and had been given a restriction that prevented him from returning him to work. Industrial Hygiene Sciences recommended the use of a respirator that would protect the employee from the workplace exposures but meet his respiratory restrictions. The physician had been unfamiliar with this option and after reviewing the information presented, the employee was authorized to return to work with the use of the respirator. This collaborative process not only enabled the employee to return to productive work, it saved tens of thousands of dollars in workers compensation costs.