In our last article we considered what responsibilities employers have when running laser processes – to protect their staff; their equipment; and the environment. Here we take a look at the laws and regulations that exist in the UK to protect staff exposed to hazardous fumes.
Employers are legally obliged to control exposure. Even if you can’t prevent the generation of a harmful substance, you still must apply protection measures.
Did you know... It’s the duty of the employer to comply with the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 through the C.O.S.H.H Regulations (2002 as amended).
There’s plenty of guidance in the UK about the requirements for monitoring exposure:
The Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 covers the protection of workers from hazards created in the workplace and places the duty on all employers “to ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, the health, safety and welfare at work” of all their employees.
The C.O.S.H.H Regulations 2002 (as amended) requires employers to control substances that are hazardous to health and includes nanomaterials.
EH40/ 2005 Workplace Exposure Limits give clear guidelines on the maximum concentrations of dusts, gases and so on that workers can breathe.
HSG 258 ‘Controlling airborne contaminants at work’ provides a specific guide to local exhaust ventilation (LEV).
Complying with the C.O.S.H.H Regulations and the requirements of EH40 should enable the employer to comply with the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974.
Some things are out there as advice; some are legal requirements. All are there for a reason.
Non-compliance of legal requirements can lead to serious consequences, such as prosecution, process closure, and damage claims by workers. Ignorance is not an excuse.
Did you know...
Laws and regulations apply to self-employed workers as well as employers.
What you can do
Production downtime, new equipment, HR issues and law suits can be a very costly but a very real threat if practical steps are not taken by the employer to reduce the level of risk created by uncontrolled contaminants.
Extracting fume safely and efficiently from the working environment is a key priority to protect the operator’s safety as well as preserve the laser and nearby equipment.
Choose an extraction solution that is fit for purpose, ensuring efficient filtration and safe removal of the end product.
BOFA has the answer.
We work with a vast network of distributors to ensure they offer a holistic solution to their clients. View our current range of laser fume extraction products or get in touch to chat through your requirements.
Got a question?
If you want to find out more about how our fume extraction solutions can benefit your business, we’d love to hear from you. Give us a call or you can ask our expert.