Employee and student exposures to occupational and environmental stressors can impair our community's health and adversely impact university operations.
Exposure assessments are a tool that industrial hygienists can use to help anticipate, recognize, evaluate, and control workplace hazards.
The exposure assessment process involves the industrial hygienist:
- Reviewing workplace practices, environments, and materials for exposure hazards in order to determine the necessity for an exposure assessment.
- Measuring occupational exposures and exposure potentials to, biological, and physical agents. Measuring these exposures generally involves using various instrumentation and sampling methods to quantify the exposure hazard
- Ensuring that exposures are controlled, minimized, or eliminated in order to maintain a workplace free of unhealthy exposures to chemical, biological and physical agents.
- Ensuring that exposure levels are in compliance with applicable State of California Occupational Safety and Health Administration (Cal/OSHA) laws and regulations and, when applicable, within industry recommendations
- Providing recommendations for lowering exposures, including:
- Elimination - suggestions for how to completely eliminate the exposure hazard where feasible
- Substitution - replace a harmful substance in a process with a less harmful substance
- Engineering controls - local exhaust ventilation, wetting systems, physical barriers, ect.
- Administrative controls - housekeeping, training, policies and procedures, signage, ect.
- Personal protective equipment (PPE) - respirators, eye protection, protective clothing, ect.