Replacing hazardous substances with less hazardous alternatives reduces risk and cost associated with OSHA compliance.
A Horton client in Wisconsin requested assistance to evaluate compliance with a change in an OSHA standard for a toxic metal, hexavalent chromium. Through industrial hygiene monitoring services provided by Horton Safety Consultants, it was discovered employees were exposed to levels exceeding the new, much lower, OSHA mandated exposure limit.
Typically, the results would force the client to develop and implement a costly and complicated compliance program, including routine employee medical evaluations, providing special respiratory protection, complete isolation of the operation from other areas of the facility, specialized training, and a host of other obligations.
Rather than recommending the implementation of a costly program, as many safety professionals would, Horton’s safety consultant looked for ways to eliminate exposure to the toxic metal. The consultant looked deeper at the situation and discovered the source of the unacceptably high monitoring results – the wire itself used in the welding process contained the toxic metal. Substituting the wire for a toxic-free alternative resulted in exposures far below the new, lower exposure limit. The consultant also made sure the new wire was an acceptable substitute for the old wire, and it performed flawlessly in production.
As a result of his work, the client was able to provide a safer workplace, demonstrate compliance with a new OSHA standard, save tens of thousands of dollars it would have cost to implement and maintain an OSHA compliant hexavalent chromium compliance program and eliminate the possibility of a costly workers’ compensation claim. Rather than take the approach many safety consultants would by putting a band-aid on the problem, the consultant found a way to remove the hazard altogether.
Is your safety consultant helping you drive down the cost of production? Contact Horton Safety Consultants at firstname.lastname@example.org or (800) 383-8283 to set up an appointment.
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