Occupational Hygiene

Apex Environmental is an Approved Inspection Authority (AIA) providing expert Occupational Hygiene services to businesses across a variety of industries both within, and outside of South Africa.

Apex Environmental is registered in accordance with the provisions of the Occupational Health and Safety Act (Act 85 of 1993) and has been approved by the Department of Employment and Labour as a Type A, Approved Inspection Authority: Occupational Hygiene.

Additionally, Apex Environmental is accredited in accordance with the recognized International Standard ISO/IEC 17020:2012 by the South African National Accreditation System (SANAS).

Being the largest organically grown Occupational Hygiene AIA in Southern Africa, Apex Environmental is home to 7 Registered Occupational Hygienists, 4 Registered Occupational Hygiene Technologists and an array of Registered Occupational Hygiene Assistants. So, there is always someone available to assist with any technical questions you may have.

 

Occupational Hygiene Legislation

Why do I need Occupational Hygiene? The health and safety of persons at work is governed by the Occupational Health and Safety Act No. 85 of 1993 and Section 8 of the act highlights the duties of every employer to provide a workplace that is, as far as is reasonably practicable, without risk to the health of the employees.

Additionally, the following specific regulations have been provided which fall under the umbrella of Occupational Hygiene, among others:

  • Environmental Regulations for Workplaces
    • Thermal Requirements
    • Lighting
    • General Ventilation
  • Facilities Regulations
  • Lead Regulations
  • Noise Induced Hearing Loss Regulations
  • Ergonomics Regulations
  • Hazardous Chemical Agents Regulations
  • Asbestos Abatement Regulations

Of the above mentioned regulations, Lead, Noise, Hazardous Chemical Agents, and Asbestos, require the services of an AIA to undertake quantitative monitoring.

 

Occupational Hygiene Assessments

Why should I use Apex Environmental? As a result of our vast experience in Occupational Hygiene, spanning a thirty year period, we offer the best, most experienced service in the following Occupational Hygiene Assessments:

 

  • Health Risk Assessments

This assessment provides essential baseline Health Risk information with a view to facilitating future assessments for progress monitoring as well as assisting management with the implementation of successful and effective Health and Safety management programmes.

 

  • Noise Risk Assessments & Monitoring

This assessment is done in accordance with the Noise-Induced Hearing Loss Regulations, 2003, framed under the Occupational Health and Safety Act of 1993 and uses both qualitative and quantitative data to risk assess employees’ exposure to noise, highlight any shortcomings of the existing hearing conservation programme and provide recommendations to reduce said risk.

 

  • Illumination Risk Assessments & Monitoring

Good lighting is essential in all buildings to promote work or other activities that are being performed. Sufficient lighting in the workplace will contribute towards the safety and well being of every worker. This is only achievable if a routine maintenance program is implemented that involves regular measurement of existing lighting.

 

  • Hazardous Chemical Agents Risk Assessments & Monitoring

A ‚ÄúHazardous Chemical Agent‚ÄĚ is identified as any toxic, harmful, corrosive, irritant or asphyxiant substance, or a mixture of such substances in the workplace.

A Chemical Risk Assessment will help employers identify and manage the risk from chemical exposure. Personal air monitoring can thereafter be undertaken on higher risk Similar Exposure Groups (SEGs) to quantify exposure levels to assist with determining the best controls.

 

  • Ventilation/Indoor Air Quality Assessments & Monitoring

The purpose of this assessment is to determine potential airborne contaminants and to evaluate ventilation systems within your company to determine compliance with Regulation 12 of the Regulations for Hazardous Chemical Agents, 2021, as well as Regulation 5 of the Environmental Regulations for Workplaces, 1987.

 

  • Ergonomic Risk Assessments

This assessment identifies and assess the risk of the main bio-mechanical actions associated with each task, who might be exposed, how they are exposed and how long they are exposed for. This assessment does not include the psycho-social aspects of ergonomics.

 

  • Hazardous Biological Agents Risk Assessments & Monitoring

This assessment comprises of a qualitative scientific estimate of the probable extent of an employee’s exposure to Bio-hazardous Agents derived from the work process, taking into consideration variables such as the frequency, duration and severity of exposure as well as existing control measures.

 

  • Lead Risk Assessments & Monitoring

This survey identifies the location and approximate quantity (inventory), condition and potential health risk of any lead and Lead Containing Materials existing within the premises.

 

  • Thermal Stress Risk Assessments & Monitoring (Heat & Cold)

A thermal stress risk is done to determine the heat stress levels or cold stress levels existing throughout the workplace and to identify potential health hazards.

 

  • Chemical Compatibility Assessments

The purpose of this evaluation is to examine the storage facilities and methods of Hazardous Chemical Substances (including Flammable Liquids) storage existing within the company.

 

  • Vibration Risk Assessments & Monitoring

This survey comprises of quantitative measurements necessary to determine the extent and severity of whole-body vibration to which employees are routinely exposed whilst undertaking daily work tasks.

 

  • ¬†Facilities Audits

This audits cover the overall assessment of facilities on site in order to ensure compliance with the Facilities Regulation, 2004.

These facilities include:

  • facilities for safekeeping
  • changing rooms
  • dining rooms
  • drinking water
  • seats

 

  • Respirator Fit Testing

This qualitative assessment is done to test if the respirators worn by employees correctly fit them, has no leaks, is a correct size, and to assure better protection for the employees within the workplace.

 

  • Fatigue Risk Assessments

This  qualitative assessment identifies routine operations that can result in physical and psychological fatigue in the workplace. After assessing these operations recommendations are provided  in order to promote employee well-being.

 

Occupational Hygiene Testing Methodologies

Depending on the Occupational Hygiene Assessment required, Apex Environmental follows procedures, guides, and standards (codes of practice) listed below:

  • South African National Standards (SANS) Codes of Practice
  • Health and Safety Executive (HSE) HSG Guides
  • National Institute for Occupational Safety & Health (NIOSH) Analytical Techniques
  • American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH) Standards
  • American Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) Methods & Standards

 

Occupational Hygiene Testing Methodologies

Depending on the Occupational Hygiene Assessment required, Apex Environmental follows procedures, guides, and standards (codes of practice) listed below:

  • South African National Standards (SANS) Codes of Practice
  • Health and Safety Executive (HSE) HSG Guides
  • National Institute for Occupational Safety & Health (NIOSH) Analytical Techniques
  • American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH) Standards
  • American Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) Methods & Standards

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