TriEx Newsletter – February 2018

Our February Newsletter is out today! We are well into 2018 now and TriEx is entering it’s busiest time of the year with our Flu season upon us! Our flu packs have been sent out and we already have bookings coming in.

Currently, the United States is experiencing an influenza epidemic, due to an unusually deadly strain of the virus circulating in the Northern Hemisphere. 4,000 people are dying each week in the US due to influenza. It’s critical that people protect themselves with a Flu vaccination this year. You can read more about this at the link below.

WorkSafe NZ are currently focusing on Clean Air in the workplace. Many workers are killed or hospitalised each year due to airborne contaminants and particulates. You can read about the steps you can do to reduce dust and contaminant exposure below.

One of our Occupational Health Nurses recently ran an exercise at Canterbury Linen Services to raise awareness of Heart Disease, which is the number 1 leading cause of death in New Zealand. This was of huge value to Canterbury Linen Services, and you can read more about at the link below.

Gallagher Bassett is also sponsoring a new initiative called the CheckPoint series, which is a web series that looks at raising awareness of Mental Health via video games.

Click here to read the full newsletter. To signup for our future newsletters click here.

Control airborne particulates in your workplace

Every year, an estimated 600-900 people die in New Zealand from work-related health issues and a further 5,000-6,000 are hospitalised with cancer, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and other chronic illnesses from workplace exposure to airborne contaminants.

Dust and other airborne particulates are a difficult hazard to manage, as the particles that cause the most damage are very difficult to detect visually. Normally the only time you’ll see them is during the late afternoon as the sun shines through a crack or window and creates a haze or shaft of light. WorkSafe NZ have launched the Clean Air programme, which is their first targeted intervention on work-related health. To reduce the risk of exposure to airborne contaminants, businesses can do the following.

Eliminate Airborne Contaminants from the workplace

PCBUs must eliminate the risk if it’s reasonably practicable. For example, isocyanate paints can be eliminated from the workplace by replacing them with water-based paints.

Minimise risks

If elimination isn’t reasonably practicable, minimise worker exposure to these products. Examples for silica dust are to fit extraction systems or use water suppression systems.

Issue Respiratory Protective Equipment (RPE)

If a risk to health still remains, supply RPE to workers. Make sure they know why they need to wear it, how to use it and that it fits properly.

RPE should not be the sole method of reducing risk. It must be used alongside other minimisation controls.

Fit test RPE

Fit testing is very important. RPE works if it forms a seal around the wearer’s nose and mouth. Fit testing is conducted by trained specialists. Your safety gear supplier can help you locate one.

Monitor workers’ exposure to airborne contaminants

Monitor workers’ exposure to airborne contaminants to check the levels of dust, vapour or fumes being created. Always consider if those levels can be further reduced. Exposure monitoring can help you find out if workers are being exposed to a hazard at harmful levels or detect whether the controls you have in place for that hazard are adequate.

Monitor workers’ lung health annually. This also helps you know whether the controls are working, and may detect early symptoms of work-related ill-health.

Provide workers with information and training

Make sure workers know about the health risks and controls for airborne contaminants. ‘Toolbox talks’ can be useful here.

Make sure workers understand the risks, what they need to do to protect themselves, and why it’s important to take part in exposure and health monitoring.

To learn how our qualified Occupational Hygiene Team can help you reduce the risk of respiratory ill-health in your workplace, call us on 0800 487 439 or email enquiries@triex.co.nz 

Training Calendar – February & March 2018

Our latest Training Calendar is out today, which includes upcoming training dates for February & March.

In this issue we continue our Psychological First Aid courses, with one course coming up this Wednesday, and a second course on March 20. This course is designed to help prepare learners to respond to someone who may be experiencing emotional distress.

We also have more Lifesaver Specials coming up next month leading up to Easter weekend.  These are exactly the same as regular Workplace First Aid courses, just at a lower price of $99 rather than $154. To book a Lifesaver special, click here. You can learn more about this course and book here.

To download your copy of this months training calendar, click here.