|Improved control of respirable crystalline silica dust
|A six month study was carried out to see what improvements needed to be made to reduce respirable dust and silica exposures on site.
The following points were raised:
- The dust masks being worn by baggers needed to be improved
- Awareness training for operators of the risks associated with respiratory silica needed to improve
- Management needed to be more robust to enforce the wearing of PPE in the area
- A working procedure needed to be drafted
- Representation from the staff who work in the area needed to be heard.
A team was established to address these issues. In relation to the use of PPE, a “Walk and talk” procedure has been introduced where the Management team conducts Walking Tours on a regular basis. Any issues identified during the tour are recorded on an Internal Concern form for review / action by the management team.
Further improvements include:
- Operators have been issued and trained on air fed masks
- Silica awareness presentation has been given to all
- A new enforcement tool had been introduced to encourage managers to formally record both good and bad practice while talking to employees about their work activities
- Good practice guides had been put up in the working area
- New procedure for operating in the bagging area issued.