In Britain, asbestosis is the leading cause of mortality from work-related health complications. Asbestos-related diseases usually take decades to develop and are incurable, killing about 5,000 people annually. So how does asbestos poisoning tie in with health and safety in the workplace?
The primary cause of asbestosis or asbestos poisoning is the microscopic, undetectable fibers of asbestos that can settle on your clothing or enter your respiration.
Before its 1999 prohibition, asbestos was utilized in several buildings and industries. Even so, a large portion of asbestos is still there, even though it is currently in the process of being removed carefully.
Thus, if asbestos is not properly handled or is damaged or disturbed, workers in older buildings may still be exposed to asbestos fibers today.
It is improbable that buildings built after 2000 have asbestos as one of their components.
The risk of developing diseases such as mesothelioma, lung cancer, laryngeal cancer, and ovarian cancer is increased by asbestos exposure. Studies also connect asbestos use to colon and breast cancer.
The chemical structure of asbestos makes it easy for it to bind to tissues and organ linings. Following this, they undergo mutations that aid in the development of cancer cells.
Pleural thickening, pleural plaques, and other diseases are caused by asbestos.
Health dangers due to asbestos poisoning can only arise if asbestos fibers get released into the air and are thereby inhaled. If the scope of your employment entails any tasks that abet this circumstance, you are at risk of asbestos poisoning.
Workers who alter the structure of buildings, such as those performing renovation work, are most at risk of exposure. This also applies to anyone doing regular upkeep on buildings, such as caretakers.
Your safety is the responsibility of the people in charge of managing the asbestos in your building. Materials containing asbestos that are in good shape and unlikely to be damaged should be left in situ with the risk reduced.
However, asbestos should be removed if it is in poor condition, or is likely to get dislodged or damaged during normal building use, and thus cannot be safely repaired or contained.
Employees who operate in buildings where asbestos is known or suspected to be present must be:
This will be included in the premises’ asbestos management strategy.
Building management of asbestos entails the following:
You will need to take different steps depending on your line of work to adhere to the law when performing any asbestos-related activity.
As the person hiring someone whose job may entail asbestos, it is your responsibility to ascertain whether a building contains asbestos before any work is done. For instance, inquire:
Additionally, you need to:
When working on a building’s construction, the following tasks will put you in the greatest danger:
We have a different asbestos safety worker’s guide. It addresses:
And that’s a wrap on our take on the risks of asbestos poisoning as regards health and safety at the workplace. We at Bright Learning Centre provide industry-standard Level 2 Health and Safety at the Workplace course. Apart from this, we conduct a wide variety of other vocational training courses as well. In case you need any further information on the same, please feel free to contact us or walk right in through the door at our learning centers on Evington Road and Melton Road, where we await you with open arms!