Hugo, our country manager had the chance to assist to the AIOH seminar in Sydney: Management & Control of Respirable Silica. This complete seminar covered essential key areas when speaking about RCS.
What to remember from this hot topic?
Quartz, Tridymite and Cristobalite are present in a lot of workplace: Mining, Construction, Stonecutting, Carrying, Tunnelling, Glasse & Paint manufacture…
The inhalation by the workers – and only their inhalation – are associated with two main diseases: Silicosis & Lung Cancer.
There are three types of Silicosis: Chronic, Accelerated and Acute. While the latency period of the first one is around 15 years the acute silicosis has a short latency period.
To prevent the dust formation, spread and exposure, many methods are available (Enclosure, Extraction, Wet process…).
The associated 8-hours Time Weighted Average exposure standard for those 3 silica polymorphs is 0,1 mg/m3. But that’s not enough, the As Low As Reasonably Practicable (ALARA) principle should be apply by managers in every workplaces to protect our workers.
Finally, to determine the dust exposure, NATA accredited laboratories use two analytical techniques:
👉 The Fourier-Transform Infrared Spectroscopy FTIR,
👉 X-ray Powder Diffraction XRD.
Only the last one does the differentiation between quartz, cristobalite, tridymite and amorphous silica. ITGA group is using both analytical techniques according to the situation and the assessment made by the occupational hygienist.
That’s why is important to ask an occupational hygienist for any help or for taking samples according to the Australian Standard (AS 2985;2009).
To conclude, we would like to thank you the two speakers of the day, Linda Apthorpe & Ian Firth, for the quality of the seminar. 4 more to go, do not let pass your chance to assist if you’re based in Hobart, Melbourne, Pert or Adelaide.
Register here: https://www.aioh.org.au/events-public/silica-seminar
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