The Danger Of Long Term Dust Exposure In Mines and Quarries

Mines and quarries are places where workers can potentially find themselves exposed to harmful levels of respirable dust. 

Long-term exposure to high respirable dust concentrations generated during mining and quarrying activities can cause mine dust lung diseases (MDLD).

That’s why the management of respirable dust in the mining industry is crucial. Mine dust lung disease is an umbrella term that includes a range of occupational lung conditions, including:

  • silicosis
  • coal workers’ pneumoconiosis
  • mixed dust pneumoconiosis
  • chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
  • asbestosis
  • cancer

Exposure Risk

Anybody exposed to harmful levels of respirable dust is at risk of developing dust-related lung disease.

The risk level is directly linked to your total level of exposure and some personal risk factors (like smoking history).

Lung defence systems can handle respirable dust particles under normal conditions. But exposure to harmful levels of respirable dust over a long period can cause MDLD.

Frequent exposure to high concentrations of dust can overwhelm the lung defence system, causing the development of scarring or other damage.

One shift of high exposure won’t cause disease to develop. Instead, it takes years for dust to build up in the lungs to cause the onset of the disease.

Prevention is Key

Prevention is by far the best medicine when it comes to mine dust lung diseases.

It’s critical that mine and quarry workers are protected from exposure to harmful levels of respirable dust to prevent mine dust lung disease.

Mine and quarry workers shouldn’t just go home safe and healthy at the end of their shift. They should be safe and healthy at the end of their career.

The neXtrack Digital Safety Platform

neXtrack is an Australian-made solution to the occupational lung disease epidemic, including silicosis.

NeXtrack is a new end-to-end solution for hazard control and real-time compliance monitoring created to respond to the devastating rise in occupational lung diseases such as silicosis that has affected more than 500 workers across the country.

To find out more about how you can LIVE LARGE with neXtrack, please REGISTER HERE

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