What Is Industrial Hygiene?
Industrial hygiene is the methodology used to improve occupational health through methods such as air sampling, noise monitoring, and contaminant sampling. Industrial hygiene is an especially important practice in industries and occupations where workers and employees are exposed to hazardous chemicals, extreme heating or cooling elements, electromagnetic fields and dangerous machinery. Less visible occupational health concerns such as patterns of repetitive injuries can also be analyzed and addressed with industrial hygiene methodologies.
The Hartford’s Industrial Hygiene Laboratory offers specialized consulting services to help businesses understand the occupational health risks they and their employees face.
What Are Dangers Industrial Hygiene Can Help Analyze and Improve?
Industrial hygiene can help businesses improve safety in order to avoid many occupational health hazards. Here is a closer look at the typical workplace dangers that are often the focus of an analysis by The Hartford’s industrial hygiene laboratory.
An industrial hygiene analysis from The Hartford can include an air sample analysis for both common and uncommon airborne contaminants. These contaminants include metal fumes, solvents, diesel exhaust, silica and carbon monoxide.
In addition to these airborne contaminants, an industrial hygiene analysis can also help assess the dangers of other environmental occupational health hazards such as extreme heat, or cold, radiation, vibration and electromagnetism.
One of the most overlooked occupational health hazards is hearing damage. An analysis from The Hartford’s industrial hygiene laboratory can help analyze hearing damage risks using noise-monitoring strategies.
Protective Equipment Risks
An industrial hygiene analysis can help businesses determine the necessary equipment needed to keep employees safe. The analysis can identify outdated safety equipment and whether safety equipment is being used correctly. Equipment included in our industrial hygiene analyses can range from respirators, hearing protection and air filtration systems to hazardous material (hazmat) suits and other protective clothing.
Occupational Disease Risks
Some occupations involve a higher exposure to certain diseases. For example, employees who work with medical waste are at higher risk for being exposed to diseases such as AIDS, and tuberculosis. An industrial hygiene analysis will help mitigate the risks of employees being introduced to materials and waste products that contain infectious diseases.
How Does an Industrial Hygiene Lab Help Improve Occupational Health?
An industrial hygiene lab like The Hartford’s can help businesses improve occupational health in three primary ways. First, we can analyze and evaluate the occupational health hazards that may be present at a work site. Secondly based on our analysis we can provide businesses with specific information and strategies to help mitigate the safety issues revealed in the analysis. Thirdly, we can help a business create a plan and ongoing strategy to help identify and mitigate future occupational health hazards.
Analyzing Occupational Health Hazards
Because of the many occupational health hazards that employees face, the best industrial hygiene labs have various methods of analysis at their disposal. The Hartford’s methods include:
- Standard evaluation surveys in which dangers are analyzed based on an observation of procedures and current equipment.
- Air monitoring and air sampling strategies that determine the quality of air that employees are breathing, the contaminants that are present in their work environment and the levels at which they exist.
- Ergonomic hazards that could arise from work activities that may involve lifting, pushing, walking, gripping, holding or more.
Developing Strategies to Prevent Occupational Health Hazards
Once worksite hazards have been identified and analyzed, The Hartford’s industrial hygiene laboratory will provide businesses with strategies to help mitigate the occupational health hazards. These strategies can involve tactics such as:
- Setting up an emergency plan and training employees on how to evacuate a facility or worksite in the event of an accident, or how to respond to common accidents that may occur at their work site.
- Creating a mitigation strategy to help reduce the amount of damage that can be done to the surrounding areas in the event of an accident.
- Upgrading equipment such as air filtration units and hazmat suits to more safely protect employees from the recognized and potential hazards that were identified in the analysis phase.
Helping Businesses Analyze Occupational Health Hazards
The Hartford’s industrial hygiene laboratory will work with businesses to help them better understand and analyze the risks their employees may face moving forward. This can involve working with a business to create a strategy for regular air sample testing, equipment inspections, radiation monitoring, and monitoring of electromagnetic and thermal levels. Even more, our industrial hygiene laboratory can help businesses gain a better understanding of OSHA Standards and learn how to conduct regular emergency procedures training for employees.
How Can The Hartford’s Industrial Hygiene Lab Help Your Business?
Since 1975, The Hartford’s Risk Engineering Laboratory has been accredited by the AIHA Laboratory Accreditation Programs (AIHA-LAP, LLC).
Our lab is certified to ISO 17025 standards and staffed by professional chemists who use the latest laboratory instrumentation & technologies. We have a team of Certified Industrial Hygienists on staff to conduct worksite evaluations, analyses and to help businesses design occupational hazard mitigation strategies. The Hartford’s lab can analyze samples and provide guidance before and after the business engages in industrial hygiene activities. Businesses can call our lab for advice and speak with one of our professional industrial hygienists who can provide the answers they seek and explain the meaning behind the data.
Why Choose The Hartford’s Lab Service?
Our lab is designed to support field technicians and safety personnel – either yours or ours. We are uniquely equipped to support your loss prevention and safety efforts, regardless of the skill or experience level of your staff.
We can analyze an array of samples, including acids, aldehydes, metals, non-routine unknowns, and volatile organic compounds.
Equipment Rental and Lab Testing
We have an extensive inventory of industrial hygiene monitoring equipment available for rental, eliminating the need for you to purchase and maintain hygiene equipment of your own. Instrument capabilities include; but are not limited to:
- Air sampling
- Noise evaluation
- Heat stress
- Indoor air quality
Customers who regularly partner with us can take advantage of these services at no additional charge:
- Sampling pumps loaned with rental fees waived
- Toll-free consultation on survey strategy and data interpretation
- For insureds of The Hartford, access to industrial hygiene training for your staff
- Sampling media provided without charge (except for passive sampling devices)
The Hartford’s industrial hygiene lab response time is among the best in the industry, and we can provide rush analyses as needed.
Call Us to Learn More
Learn more about the extensive capabilities of our industrial hygiene lab at The Hartford. Contact us directly at 1-800-986-3509. Technical assistance is available M-F, 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. ET.