At the end of this module, you will be able to:
- State the definition of a chemical hazard
- List the physical and health hazards posed by some chemicals
- List the ways that chemicals can enter your body
- List best practices for preparing to work with hazardous chemicals
- List best practices for working with hazardous chemicals
- Identify the basic steps of a typical Emergency Spill Response Plan
The following key questions are answered in this module:
What are hazardous chemicals?
Hazardous chemicals are any liquids, gases, or solids which can harm people or pose risk of injury or property damage.
How would one control exposure to hazardous chemicals at a mine site?
Controlling chemical exposure requires awareness by informing all personnel of the existence and location of chemical hazards; knowledge of the chemical hazards at the mine site; and action by developing a safe work environment.
What are some best practices when working with chemicals?
Best practices include but are not limited to: wearing appropriate personal protective equipment; using chemicals for their intended purpose; securely resealing them; wiping up any excess chemicals and properly disposing of the used materials.
Do mine sites need an Emergency Spill Response Plan?
Yes. Your mine should have a written Emergency Spill Response Plan in place that clearly outlines procedures for managing chemical spills.
Below is a transcript of the video sample provided for this module:
When working with or around chemicals at a mine, it is critically important to control exposure through awareness, knowledge, and action. While exposure to some hazardous chemicals can present health hazards ranging from immediate or acute reactions such as short-term skin irritations and burns to poisoning, other chemicals can have long-term or chronic effects resulting in organ disease, cancer, or even death. Mine operators must have written Hazcom and emergency spill response programs in place that comply with all applicable governmental organizations. To reduce risk of injuries, always pay close attention to your surroundings. Be aware of emergency communication procedures, wear appropriate PPE, and consult the safety manager at your facility for further guidance.
Use the additional resources and links below to learn more about this topic:
- US Government Publishing Office (GPO) – www.gpo.gov
- GPO electronic Code of Federal Regulations - http://www.ecfr.gov/cgi-bin/text-idx?SID=b964a5ef645d3bba8d833c22383d4419&mc=true&tpl=/ecfrbrowse/Title30/30cfr47_main_02.tpl
- US Department of Labor Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) – http://arlweb.msha.gov
- MSHA Hazard Communication - http://arlweb.msha.gov/hazcom/hazcom.htm
- MSHA HazCom Compliance Guide - http://arlweb.msha.gov/regs/complian/guides/hazcom/hazcomcompguide.pdf