NEWSLETTER. Spring 2013. Who are we and what do we stand for ?.
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NEWSLETTER Spring 2013 Who are we and what do we stand for? The Ballast Dust Working Group (BDWG) is an association of 8 group members with the common interest in identifying, mitigating and managing the risks associated with ballast handling and the dusts created through the process of attrition. The BDWG have a common goal to protect the health, safety and welfare of all employees and other people who might be affected by ballast handling activities within the Rail Industry Facts and Figures The Ballast Dust Working Group has been sub divided into 6 different working parties. Each working party has a specific deliverable to help support the Rail Industry in controlling the risks surrounding Ballast handling and Ballast Dust particularly. These Sub Groups will be reviewing; Safe Systems of Work Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Occupational Exposure Monitoring Communications Behavioural Change Respiratory Protective Equipment 2.5 million Tonnes of Ballast Aggregate used by the Rail Industry each year 18857 Numbers of wagons involved in the transit of ballast across the Rail Infrastructure 85% Percentage of Ballast transited by Rail 15% Percentage of Ballast transited by Road BDWG/N/001
SILICOSIS- Silicosis, a lung disease caused by breathing in silica dust, is believed to date back to Neolithic times. Silica (chemical name silicon dioxide) is everywhere. It is a major component of sand, sandstone, rock and granite, and often forms a significant proportion of clay, shale and slate. Quartz is the most common form of crystalline silica used throughout industry As far as occupational exposure is concerned it is crystalline silica that is of key interest. Silica has been linked to an increased risk of lung cancer, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) and ‘may’ be linked to kidney disease and autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis. Scientists at the Health and Safety Laboratory (HSL) recently estimated that 789 people die annually of silica induced lung cancer. Source: 30 May 2011 The RoSPA Occupational Safety & Health Journal The Ballast Dust Working group has been set up to develop risk assessments, controls and health surveillance to help protect railway workers and their health. • Occupational Exposure Monitoring • This working group is focussed on setting an industry pro forma for the monitoring and reporting of occupational exposure monitoring for all activities involving Ballast and Ballast Dust generation. • The pro forma will incorporate the requirements of the Health and Safety Executives Workplace Exposure Limits (WELs) as defined in their Guidance Note EH40 2005, which form part of the requirements of the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (COSHH) Regulations 2002 (as amended). • The working group shall also collate a Rail Industry database of monitoring results for all activities involving Ballast and Ballast Dust generation using the EH40 WEL limits as follows; • Respirable Dust 4 mg.m-3/8 hour • Total Inhalable Dust 10 mg.m-3/8 hour • Respirable Silica 0.1 mg.m-3/8 hour • This Industry database shall be made available to all group members through the Network Rail Safety Central web portal and be used as a baseline for ongoing occupational monitoring and management of risks to employees and the development of future monitoring protocols and improved controls. BDWG/N/001
Think: Where Safety Starts This working group is focused on working with Network Rail on developing a behavioral safety and human factors module on Ballast Dust, challenging the way we think about safety and the acknowledgement that everyone has a part to play in the safety of anyone within the Rail Industry. This group will commence in Spring 2013 • Communications • Everyone Home Safe Every Day • The working group understands the importance of communicating to the industry about who we are and what we are aiming to achieve. • We will initially be releasing an awareness campaign under the Network Rail ‘everyone home safe every day’ (EHSED) banner which will aim to educate the industry on the risks associated with ballast dust and what we as an industry can do to protect ourselves and others. • We will do this through the following mediums; • Poster Campaigns • EHSED Presentation • Tool box talk cards • Memory cards • These documents will shortly become available through Network Rail’s Safety Central web portal Control of Substances Hazardous to Health This working group is developing a guidance document which advises the industry on the prioritization and control measures that can be applied to control ballast dust exposure to staff within the Rail environment. These documents are task specific and review not only activities being performed but also the different groups of people exposed mandating appropriate control measures and RPE when required. These documents along with a supporting training presentation will shortly become available through Network Rail’s Safety Central web portal IOSH Railway Group The BDWG recently participated in the IOSH Railway group conference ‘Dust, bugs and fumes – it’s about COSHH’ where the Rail Industry was encouraged to focus more on protecting workers health. The event, held in July 2012 also took a look at how employers can comply with COSHH Regulations, helping raise awareness of how to properly monitor exposure levels. Speakers on the day included Dr Claire Dickinson, central specialist inspectors team manager and occupational health programme manager at the Office of Rail regulator (ORR) and Julie Helps, from the HSE. BDWG/N/001
ORR Review The BDWG continue to hit headlines when referenced within the recent ORR publication of their Health and Safety report, July 2012 where they acknowledge the collaborative work by the ballast dust working group, led by Network Rail, on the risks posed by exposure to silica dust. Respiratory Protective Equipment (RPE) The working group is focussed on reviewing the RPE requirements for specific work activities involving Ballast Dust generation. Focusing strongly on the Personal Protective Equipment at Work Regulations 1992 and the Health and Safety Executives Guidance - HSG53 - Respiratory protective equipment at work: A practical guide, this working group is tasked with producing the following documents associated with the management of the risks associated with ballast dust; Procedure on RPE Supporting training presentation on RPE Activity specific RPE Risk Assessments Tool Box Talk on RPE Updates will be issued routinely through this Newsletter and all materials will become available through Network Rail’s Safety Central and Opsweb web portals A Word from Us… ‘I am part of the ballast dust working group as I want Balfour Beatty to be part of an industry leading group. Our aim is to minimise the risk of ballast dust to our workers and minimise the disturbance to neighbours and the environment’. Mark Drayton Senior Environmental Advisor Balfour Beatty Rail Safe Systems of Work Working in conjunction with the COSHH working group this team shall develop a suite of SSoW around ballast handling activities This group will commence mid 2013 RoSPA Occupational Health Journal on the theme of ‘working together’ The Ballast Dust Working Group has submitted an article to ROSPA on its current activities. This article was featured in the October 2012 issue ‘Recognising the importance of occupational health to the Rail Industry, the BDWG is a key driver in seeking OH&S improvements. Working together is a more effective way to achieve this.’ Edward Hodson Safety Assurance Manager DB Schenker Rail UK Erol Baduna Competence Specialist NDS Services 'Being part of a working group that promotes and supports front line management in helping the workforce understand what a safe environment means to them is important'. For further information please contact: Caroline Meek Lynsey Gilfillan Head of HSEA National SQE Manager Caroline.Meek@email@example.com BDWG/N/001