WHAT IS SILICA DUST?
Crystalline silica is a common mineral that is found in construction materials such as sand, stone, concrete, brick, and mortar. When workers scarify, grind, cut, drill, or crush materials that contain crystalline silica, very small dust particles are created.
ON 17/01/2020, THE NEW EUROPEAN DIRECTIVE 2017/2398, AMENDING DIRECTIVE 2004/37/EC, CAME INTO EFFECT ON THE PROTECTION OF WORKERS FROM THE RISKS RELATED TO EXPOSURE TO CARCINOGENS OR MUTAGENS AT WORK. MEMBER STATES SHALL BRING INTO FORCE THE LAWS, REGULATIONS AND ADMINISTRATIVE PROVISIONS NECESSARY TO COMPLY WITH THIS DIRECTIVE.
In Article 18a, Annex I, which defines the list of substances, the following point has been added:“6. Work involving exposure to respirable crystalline silica dust generated by a work process”. Crystalline silica is a common mineral that is found in construction materials such as sand, stone, concrete, brick, and mortar. When workers scarify, grind, cut, drill, or crush materials that contain crystalline silica, very small dust particles are created.
Exposure to respirable crystalline silica (very small particles at least 100 times smaller than ordinary sand you might find on beaches and playgrounds) can occur during common construction tasks, such as using grinders, scarifiers, masonry saws, drills and handheld powered tools. Workers who inhale these very small crystalline silica particles are at increased risk of developing serious silica-related diseases, including silicosis, lung cancer, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or kidney disease.
Therefore it is important to limit worker exposures to respirable crystalline silica. To do so, machines have to be equipped with a local exhaust and connected to an appropriate dust collector in order to collect all the created dust. This dust collector must be equipped with a HEPA filter which traps over 99.995 % of dust with a grain size of under 1 micron. In addition, it is also essential to avoid exposure to dust when changing dust bags and cleaning or replacing the filters.
Whichever technique is selected for the removal of hazardous materials, using a performing dust collector specifi cally designed for decontamination jobs, is a key factor in order to guarantee the operators safety and protect the enviroment. This includes a good bagging system and the right filters.
DUST REPRESENTING A MEDIUM RISK
Traps over 99.9 % of dust with a grain size of under 2 microns.
DUST REPRESENTING A HIGH RISK
Traps over 99.995 % of dust with a grain size of under 1 micron (it includes carcinogenic dusts and dusts contaminated with carcinogens and/or pathogens).
Our Longopac system allows you to collect the dust in easy to handle 25 kg bags, without dispersing dust. The tubelike bagging system is dust free since the bags are replaced and sealed from the outside – there is no contact with the waste.
Blastrac pre-separators can triple the lifetime of the filters because it captures up to 95% of dust before it goes into the dust collector. They are positioned between the machine and the dust collector. It also prevents reduction in the suction performance of the dust collector. They are equipped with a Longopac bagging system which is easy to mount and handle.