Relevance of Chemistry
Chemical and Biology Safety
Classification of Hazardous Chemicals
The Relevance of chemistry to Occupational Safety, Health an Environment
Chemistry is the science of chemicals which studies the laws governing their formation, combination and behaviour under various conditions, it is everywhere and without it we would not be a civilized and highly technical world. Chemistry explains how food changes as you cook it, how it rots, how to preserve food, how your body uses the food you eat, and how ingredients interact to make food. You use chemistry when you use bleaches and disinfectants and even ordinary soap and water. How do they work? That's chemistry! You need to understand basic chemistry so you can understand how vitamins, supplements, and drugs can help or harm you. The importance of chemistry lies partly in developing and testing new medical treatments and medicines. Chemistry is at the heart of environmental issues. What makes one chemical a nutrient and another chemical a pollutant? How can you clean up the environment? What processes can produce the things you need without harming the environment? We're all chemists in some way or another. We use chemicals every day and perform chemical reactions without thinking much about them. Chemistry is important because everything you do is chemistry! Even your body is made of chemicals. Chemical reactions occur when you breathe, eat, or just sit there reading. All matter is made of chemicals, so the importance of chemistry is that it's the study of everything.
In the OSH act of 2004 Part 2, section 6, it states: “It shall be the duty of every employer to ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, the safety, health and welfare at work of all his employees” and also the provision and maintenance of a working environment for his employees that is, so far as is reasonably practicable, safe, without risks to health, and adequate as regards amenities and arrangements for their welfare at work.
A hazard is any source of potential damage, harm or adverse health effects on something or someone under certain conditions at work. Basically, a hazard can cause harm or adverse effects (to individuals as health effects or to organizations as property or equipment losses). A hazard is a source or potential source of injury, ill health or disease. Anything which might cause injury or ill health to anyone at or near a workplace is a hazard.
There are four main hazards in the work place.
Physical Hazard– slips, trips and falls – Slips, trips and falls are the most common of work place hazards. These occur when the surface is wet, contaminated, uneven or due to poor housekeeping. This can result in serious disabling injuries that can impact an employee’s ability to do his or her job, often resulting in lost workdays, reduced productivity and expensive worker compensation claims.
Chemical Hazard – arise from excessive airborne concentration of mists, vapors, gas, or solids that are in the form of dusts or fumes. In addition to the hazard of inhalation, many of these materials may act as skin irritants or maybe toxic by absorption through the skin. Chemicals can be ingested although this is not the primarily the main route of entry into the body.
Storage and disposal of chemicals – oil and fluid are constantly being used by are improperly disposed of leaving the employees exposed to the excess spillage/ leakage and dangerous vapors, and even the chance of an employee slipping in the excess oil.
Biological Hazard – unsanitary/ inadequate washroom facilities for employees. The employees to washroom facilitates ratio in highly inadequate. There are approximately 54 workers who share washroom facilities of just 4...
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