Why all workplace dusts are not equal

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Lots of workplaces are dusty environments, just think of the average bakery or construction site.  However, the controls required for some industries are way more stringent than others.    

The cutting of most stone benchtops is via wet cutting methods, but timber on a construction site isn’t wet cut and they both produce dusts. There are a lot of reasons for this, industry standards, cost, the kiwi she’ll be right attitude.    

One of the major reasons is that not all dusts are the same and they can cause different health effects on the body.  In general, any dust particle that you can breathe in (we call this inhalable dust) is harmful to the body, that’s why there is a workplace exposure standard for inhalable dust.  If the particular dust has specific effects on the body cancer (asbestos), asthma (wood dust), silicosis (crystalline silica) then the particular dust that can cause that will have a lower (more stringent) exposure standard.   

That’s why it's important to get one of our team to come to the worksite and do an exposure assessment and identified the types of dust that you might be exposed to.