Fine particles can penetrate deep into the lungs and cause health problems.

The finest particles are the most dangerous – they can be inhaled deeply into the lungs and cause inflammation as well as a wide range of health problems for certain individuals.

The dangers are compounded when workers are exposed to fine particulate matter at the workplace, but certain guidelines and threshold values are in place in most countries to protect the health and safety of those workers.

A subdivision of the German Research Foundation, the Senate Commission for the Investigation of Health Hazards of Chemical Compounds in the Work Area, has made important changes to the 2011 MAK and BAT Values List and recommends reducing the general threshold limit value for dust.

The recommendations contain new data on a total of 82 substances and come in response to recent studies, which have determined that dust can be carcinogenic at certain exposure limits.

The Commission determined a new MAK value of 0.3 mg/m3 for the general threshold limit value for dust (in German: Allgemeiner Staubgrenzwert), and bumped the granular biologically long-lasting dusts (GBS), which penetrate deep into the lungs upon inhalation, into Carcinogenicity Category 4.

This category identifies cancer-causing materials that do not increase cancer risk in humans if the corresponding MAK value is not exceeded.

MAK values indicate the amount of a substance – be it in the form of gas, steam or aerosol in the air at the workplace – that will not cause long-term damage.

The Commission applied a procedure for the calculation of the MAK values from animal experiments with oral intake of substances that is similar to that being used on the European level (REACH). The review of 24 values affected by this procedure resulted in a reduction for 11 of the substances. The rest remained unchanged.

Read the entire press release here.

Particle and chemical pollution in the workplace

Electrocorp has designed industrial-strength air filtration systems for heavy-dust environments and workplaces where indoor air quality poses a health and safety concern for workers.

Some recommended units:

Superior air scrubber: DirtyDog

DirtyDog Series

The DirtyDog dust collector is engineered to reduce dust levels by 70-90% to provide healthier, cleaner air in workplaces such as body shops, workshops and woodshops. Comes with a washable pre-filter, a cleanable bag filter and optional HEPA filter. Pressure switch indicates a filter change. Can be hung from the ceiling or placed on the floor.

AirMarshal Series

This air cleaner is a powerful, portable unit for controlling dust particles or chemicals, gases and odors. Variable speed, replacement indicator light for the HEPA filter. Comes with a 24 to 36 lb. activated carbon filter, medical-grade HEPA, ProDense pre-filter and can be equipped with a special hose, exclusive carbon blends and electrostatic particle filter. Negative air ready.

AirMarshal: Cleaner air with multi-stage filtration system

AirRhino Series

The AirRhino is one of Electrocorp’s most versatile and cost-effective units and can be switched from particle filtration to chemical, gas and odor adsorption right on site. Comes with a medical-grade HEPA filter, a ProDense pre-filter, a special dust filter an activated carbon filter and can accommodate a UV germicidal lamp, a bag filter for large particles and custom carbon blends.

Specialized air cleaning solutions for industrial applications

Electrocorp specializes in providing customized air filtration solutions to many different industries, including woodshops and auto body shops and garages. For more units and more information, contact Electrocorp at 1-866-667-0297.