Posts Tagged frac sand dust exposure

Tuning Ventilation Systems Saves Energy, Reduces Employee Exposure Risk

Are we running exhaust fans enough to keep the air breathable and safe? Are we over-running fans and wasting energy?

Area exposure monitors are ideal for showing airborne particulate concentration over time in a designated area. Personal exposure monitors can do the same, but they also provide usable details about concentrations within the employee’s breathing zone. Used together, the two device types provide effective real-time data for making decisions regarding employee health and ventilation control.

Recently, we helped a customer with a large welding operation. There was visible smoke on the plant floor during operation, so they needed to address both potential hexavalent chrome and total respirable dust exposure. They decided to use the TSI DustTrak DRX handheld unit for area monitoring, and employees started wearing TSI SidePak AM510s for personal monitoring.

DustTrakDRX BlogSidePak AM510 Blog.jpg

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Finding the right respiratory protection for the fracking industry

An article in last month’s Industrial Safety and Hygiene News had some fairly compelling statistics about worker exposure to potentially dangerous airborne silica at hydraulic fracturing operation sites.

Of the 116 samples collected at 11 different U.S. fracking sites:

  • 47% showed silica exposures greater than the calculated OSHA PEL.
  • 79% showed silica exposures greater than the NIOSH REL of 0.05 milligrams per cubic meter (mg/m3).
  • 9% of all samples showed silica exposures 10 or more times the PEL, with one sample more than 25 times the PEL.
  • 31% of all samples showed silica exposures 10 or more times the REL, with one sample more than 100 times the REL.

So, how do you keep workers safe? Do you have a respiratory protection plan in place? Do you have the right safety and personal protection equipment?

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