LEV monitoring guide
Fettling normally involves the use of powered hand tools such as chippers and grinders. The operation presents a number of significant risks. Using power tools exposes the workers to high noise levels and hand-arm vibration. There is also a risk from exposure to the dust generated by the process. The dust will largely consist of metal particles, but this is usually of low toxicity. The main concern occurs where sand is used for the moulds in which the metal is cast. This is crystalline silica. Some particles of sand from the mould adhere to the metal and grinding during fettling can lead to the release of fine dust including particles of respirable crystalline silica. “Respirable” particles are smaller than 10 microns in diameter and can reach the deepest regions of the lung. Regular, repeated exposure to respirable crystalline silica can lead to silicosis, a serious, debilitating lung disease.
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) are the government body responsible for the regulation and enforcement of work related risks to people in the work place. Dust & fume exposure is a key element of the COSHH 2002 (Control of Substances Hazard to Health) regulations setting out exposure limits, preventative guidelines and on going reductions of the contact between people and hazardous gas and particulates. Under COSHH, companies must take steps to prevent, control, maintain and monitor dust and fume exposure in the workplace, as laid out in regulation 9.
As LEV is a control measure under COSHH Regulations it must be regularly and thoroughly inspected and tested. As stated above, LEV regulations outline that any employer who uses local exhaust ventilation to control hazardous substances must ensure that it is operating effectively. Local Exhaust Ventilation Testing is a legal requirement in the UK. All equipment must be thoroughly examined and tested by a competent person at least every 14 months to ensure employees are safe.
Equipment that draws pollutants from an operation or process in the working environment. Made up of an inlet like a hood, slit, arm, cabinet or booth. This will be located near to or close to the area of the substance release. All suchlike equipment needs to be connected by ducting and a fan to enable the movement of air. The removed air passed through a filter or is extracted to atmosphere away from the workplace. How Welding Supplies Direct can help ? WE will carry out a thorough tests in line with COSHH Regulation 9 as detailed in HSE Guide HSG258 Our levels of service can be tailored to your Companies needs. However, most clients choose to take advantage of by combining servicing with the LEV testing. See more details at LEV Testing Companies.
The employer must consider other control options and use them where appropriate (see HSE leaflets Working with substances hazardous to health1 and Clearing the air2) before applying LEV. In some circumstances, LEV may not be a reasonably practicable control as there may be many sources or extensive contaminant clouds that are too large for LEV alone to control. LEV suppliers provide goods (an LEV system) and may then act as a service provider. Designers interpret the requirements of the employer and advise on an effective LEV system which is capable of delivering the required control.