Mild steel welding fume is proven to cause lung and kidney cancer to workers…

The HSE announcement, dated February 2019, explains that while general ventilation was deemed adequate protection from mild steel welding fume, it is now insufficient and that Local Exhaust Ventilation (LEV) systems and Respiratory Protective Equipment (RPE) is required as a result of the findings.

The report said, “There is new scientific evidence from the International Agency for Research on Cancer that exposure to mild steel welding fume can cause lung cancer and possibly kidney cancer in humans. The Workplace Health Expert Committee has endorsed the reclassification of mild steel welding fume as a human carcinogen.

With immediate effect, there is a strengthening of HSE’s enforcement expectation for all welding fume, including mild steel welding; because general ventilation does not achieve the necessary control.”

Read full report here.

The report means that, as an employer, you must now ensure you have adequate extraction in place to protect your workforce from mild steel welding fume, in the form of an LEV system and RPE where necessary. The HSE make random workplace visits to check adequate extraction is in place, being used and is in full working order. If it is not, they can issue fines of thousands of pounds.

Impact Technical Services provides LEV systems, equipment and testing to completely remove the hazardous fume from the working area. We are specialised and experienced at dealing with this type of welding fume and are on hand to ensure you are fully compliant and protecting your workforce.

If you have any queries regarding this update or would like to know more about LEV, extraction methods and air quality testing, please feel free to contact us on 0116 2448855 or email us at [email protected]