For every hazardous chemical, measures must be developed to ensure that under all foerseeable operating conditions no one, whether employee, visitor, contractor or member of the public, is exposed to any substance in a concentration that may injure their health. The following actions are possible:

  • Replacement by a safe alternative
  • Containing the substance so exposure is prevented
  • Providing personal protective equipment (PPE)

Replacement is the best and most effective safeguard, but it must be realistic in terms of process need. Many extremely hazardous substances can quite safely be employed in manufacturing processes provided they are at al times contained within the plant and not allowed time to escape in the working environment. An essential feature of containment is a high level of safety integrity on the plant, which in turn demands high levels of plant maintenance.

Personal protective equipment is used only as a last resort or in cases of very low risk. It can be very effective provided the equipment is suitable for the hard to be faced; it is acceptable to and effective on the wearer; it does not interfere with the functions to be carried out by the person wearing it and it is of an approved type.