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Cashins & Associates Blog

Industrial Ventilation - Why Periodic Evaluations are Needed

Posted by Mike Cashins on Thu, Jul, 12, 2012 @ 10:07 AM

Industrial_ExhaustIndustrial ventilation is the primary control of emissions of heat, toxic fumes, particulate substances and dust in the workplace. Its proper management and maintenance are paramount to all businesses, big or small. Periodic evaluations are, therefore, necessary to ensure worker safety within the work area.

Let's take a look at the fundamental reasons why periodic industrial ventilation evaluations are needed.

To ensure the health of workers. A healthy workforce means a healthy business. When workers are assured of optimal well-being, what follows is optimal performance that translates to optimal bottom line. While white-collar workplaces like offices, banks, hotels, restaurants, malls and hospitals are not exempt from contaminated air exposure, industrial sectors are more vulnerable to health hazards. Defective or mismanaged ventilation in industries that use chemicals for the creation of products may expose workers to major health impacts like damage to the lungs, kidneys, liver and sensory organs, among others, as well as death in extreme cases. Since the adverse health effects of overexposure are not immediately known, periodic evaluations on industrial ventilation systems should never be neglected.

To ascertain the safety of workers and business assets. Many industrial accidents are caused by uncontrolled emissions of noxious chemicals that can compromise the safety of workers in workplaces and destroy costly business assets. Clogged exhaust pipes, excessive heat emissions or too much concentration of flammable fumes, for example, can result to fires that can endanger the lives of people and property like buildings and equipment. When lives and property are at risk, it becomes imperative that thorough examination and testing on industrial ventilation systems be done at regular intervals.

To guarantee the efficiency and effectiveness of equipment and operational processes. Periodic and proper industrial ventilation evaluation makes maintenance easier. Remember that effective maintenance is vital for the continuance of an efficient system that helps prevent potential losses. Installing a ventilation system is not a guarantee that airborne contaminants are within allowable levels. Quality routine evaluation thereafter are crucial in order to ensure effective and efficient performance. Moreover, even initially efficient units, if not regularly checked and well maintained, eventually deteriorate resulting in decreased performance and inadequate protection. A poorly maintained ventilation system may be more costly because of equipment impairment and inefficient processes than a well maintained system.

To help bring about a cleaner and safer global environment. An effective ventilation system ensures that air pollutants inside and outside the work area are contained. While there are industrial ventilations that exhaust only the work area, there are more improved types that can remove the contaminants at their source so that they do not escape to the outside air. Some even have filtration systems to prevent dust-like particles made of hazardous metals, stones and other solid particulate substances from being diffused into the environment.

Since there are various types of ventilation systems, it is important that qualified people are performing these critical assessments. When the stakes are high, you cannot afford to take chances and risk peoples' lives and the future of your business. An industrial hygienist is the best choice to perform exhaust ventilation evaluations. Industrial ventilation systems should be evaluated on at least an annual basis to ensure optimal performance and safety.

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Topics: industrial hygiene, exhaust ventilation

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