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Concrete

Concrete

A building material made from a mixture of coarse aggregate, fine aggregate, cement and water. It is widely used in construction work. Almost all the ingredients of concrete are harmful to health. The hazards involving in concreting activity are follows




Concrete Health effects:



Cement can cause ill health mainly by Skin contact. Contact with wet cement can cause both burns and dermatitis.


Concrete Cement Burns:


Contact of freshly mixed concrete or mortar against the skin which may cause serious skin burns or ulcers can result which can take several months to heal and may need skin grafting.


Concrete Dermatitis:

Skin affected with dermatitis feels itchy and sore and looks red, scaly and cracked.

There are two sorts of dermatitis can occur:

a)  Irritant dermatitis results from direct damage to the skin caused by the combination of wetness, chemical corrosives and abrasiveness of cement in concrete and mortar.

b)  Allergic dermatitis results when workers become sensitized to chromium salts which may be present in the raw materials used to make cement. Sensitization to additives such as pigments, epoxy resins and hardeners can also occur.


Concrete Eye contact:


Contact with cement powder or wet cement can cause irritation and inflammation.

Concrete Inhalation of dust:


High levels of dust can be produced when cement is handled, for example when emptying bags of cement or during their disposal. In the short term, exposure to high levels of cement dust irritates the nose and throat and causes difficulty with breathing. There is uncertainty about the long term health effects of breathing in cement dust; chronic chest trouble is possible.

Concrete Musculoskeetal risk:





Working with cement also poses less obvious risks such as sprains and strains particularly to the back, arms and shoulders from, for example, lifting and carrying bags of cement, mixing mortar, etc. there is also a risk of more serious damage to the back from the cumulative effects of long-term involvement with these activities, particularly the manual handling of cement bags weighing up to 50 kg.

Concrete Preventive Measure:

Concrete Personal Protection :


To protect skin from cement mixtures, workers should wear 

1) Alkali resistance gloves

2) Overall with long sleeves and full-length trousers (pull sleeves down over gloves and truck pants inside boots and duck-tape at the top to keep mortar and concrete out.

3) Water proof boots high enough to prevent concrete from flowing in when workers must stand in fresh concrete.

4) Suitable respiratory protective equipment such as P,N, or R 95 respirator when cement dust cant be avoided.

5) Suitable eye protection where mixing pouring or other activities may endanger eyes minimum safety glasses with side shields or goggles under extremely dusty conditions, tight fitting invented or indirectly vented goggles.

6) Don't wear contact lenses when handling cement or cement products.


Concrete work Practices :

1) Work in ways that minimize the amount of cement dust released.

2) When possible wet-cut rather than dry -cut masonry products.

3) Mix dry cement in well-ventilated areas.

4) Make sure to work upwind dust sources.

5) Where possible , use ready mixed on site.

6) When kneeling on fresh concrete, use a dry board or waterproof knee pads to protect knees from water that can soak through fabric.

7) Remove jewelry such as rings and watched because wet cement can collect under them. 


Concrete First Aid Measures :

When contacting a physician, take safety datasheet with you.

* After significant accident inhalation move person to fresh air. Dust in throat and nasal passages should clear spontaneously. Contact a physician if irritation persists or later develops or if discomfort or other symptoms do not subside.

* After contact with eyes, do not rub eyes as additional cornea damage is possible by mechanical stress, Remove any contact lenses and open the eyelid(S) widely to flush eye(S) immediately by thoroughly rinsing with plenty of clean water for at least minutes to remove all particles. If possible use Isotonic water (0.9% Na Cl) contact a specialist of occupational medicine or an eye specialist.

* After skin contact , for dry cement remove and rinse abundantly with water. For wet cement wash skin with water. Remove contaminated clothing, footwear, watched etc.. and clean thoroughly before re-using them. Seek medical treatment in all cases of irritation or burns.



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