In the construction workplace, there are many hazards to watch out for – and some of them don’t include a highly physical form, such as trench-related injuries or being injured by a piece of heavy equipment. No, sometimes they come in exposure form, when airborne particles wreak havoc on the body and cause you to fall ill. Sometimes this can lead to further complications down the road, which is why workplaces must protect employees from this occurrence.
There are many sources of exposure in the workplace. It can happen from virtually any process that takes place in the construction workzone, where solid material is being broken or separated. It can happen through abrasive blasting, like the removal of paint and rust or the cleaning of buildings. It can happen when you handle powdered chemicals and so much more. Furthermore, there are many types of dust in the construction workplace such as silica dust, wood dust, and lower toxicity dusts. If you work in a construction zone, you could be at risk of many diseases and conditions and not even know it, such as lung cancer, silicosis, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, and asthma.
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Unfortunately, the effects of these diseases can sometimes happen very quickly, while others can take time to develop and wreak havoc along the way. Dust builds up in the lungs over time and the effects won’t be instantly obvious, which means that you could be exposed for longer amounts of time before action is taken. It is believed that 500 construction workers die from silica exposure every year, which is why laws have been put in place to protect workers.
The Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulation of 2002 covers activities that could expose workers to dust. They believe in assessing the risks of the workplace, controlling the risks, and reviewing the controls. This includes giving workers the proper equipment to protect them from risks in the first place. Workplace is safety and key, which is why employers must do everything they can to protect employees to the best of their ability. If an employer has not taken proper steps to protect your health in the workplace, you may have a case. Call us today for more information.