Occupational Hygiene Services

EXCO Services performs the assessment AND monitoring of the following health stressors:

Occupational Hygiene is defined by the IOHA (International Occupational Hygiene Association) as the discipline of anticipating, recognising, evaluation and controlling health hazards in the working environment with the objective of protecting worker health and well-being.

EXCO Services is a SANAS Accredited Inspection Body (certification no. OH0077) and a Department of Labour Approved Inspection Authority (certification no. OH0077 – CI 011), contributing to the protection of worker health and well-being.

Occupational Hygiene Services offered:

  • The risk of developing Noise-induced Hearing Loss (NIHL) continues to be one of the most prevalent occupational hazards when working in a noisy environment and occurs across a wide spectrum of industries.
  • The Noise-induced Hearing Loss Regulations (2003) forms part of the Occupational Health and Safety Act (No. 85 of 1993).
  • Noise monitoring is a legal requirement in working environments where noise levels are generated above the statutory limit of 85 dB(A), and should be repeated at least every 24 months.
  • All noise surveys are performed according to SANS 10083:2013 – The measurement and assessment of occupational noise for hearing conservation purposes.

  • Good lighting is essential in all buildings to promote an effective and productive work environment.
  • Regulation 3 of the Environmental Regulations for Workplaces (1987) forms part of the Occupational Health and Safety Act (No. 85 of 1993).
  • All lighting surveys are performed according to SANS 10114-1:2005 – Interior Lighting (Part 1: Artificial lighting of interiors)

  • Hazardous Chemical Substances (HCS) can be defined as any toxic, harmful, corrosive, irritant, or asphyxiant substance or a mixture of such substances in a workplace.
  • HCS can be present in the form of dusts, fumes, vapours, mists, and gasses.
  • Hazardous Chemical Substances Regulations (1995) forms part of the Occupational Health and Safety Act (No. 85 of 1993).
  • Measurement programmes include:
    • Table 1 HCS Substances – once every 12 months; and
    • Table 2 HCS Substances – once every 24 months.
  • HCS Monitoring is performed according to International Standards and Methodology.
    • NIOSH (The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health);
    • OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration); and
    • HSE (Health and Safety Executive).

  • Lead is a known carcinogen, and can be present in an organic (Tetra-ethyl lead) or inorganic (normal grey matter) form.
  • It is therefore important to manage lead exposure in the workplace.
  • The Lead Regulations (2002) forms part of the Occupational Health and Safety Act (No. 85 of 1993).
  • An official measurement programme required if airborne exposure to lead exceeds half the Occupational Exposure Limit (OEL):
    • Tetra-ethyl lead – 0.10 mg/m³;
    • Lead, other than tetra-ethyl lead – 0.15 mg/m³.
  • All lead-monitoring surveys are performed according to HSG 173 (2006) – Monitoring strategies for toxic substances and SANS 6164:2009 – Determination of lead (inorganic and tetra-alkyl) in workplace air by atomic absorption spectrophotometry.

  • Asbestos-related diseases are currently responsible for more than 4000 deaths a year in the UK, and kills more people than any other single work-related illness.
  • Asbestos Regulations (2001) forms part of the Occupational Health and Safety Act (No. 85 of 1993).
  • All asbestos monitoring surveys are performed according to HSG 248 (2006) – Asbestos: The analyst’s guide for sampling, analysis and clearance procedures.

  • Thermal stress risk assessments are done to determine the heat or cold stress levels present in the workplace.
  • Regulation 2 of the Environmental Regulations for Workplaces (1987) forms part of the Occupational Health and Safety Act (No. 85 of 1993).
  • Heat stress measurements are performed according to the International Standard ISO 7423: 1989 “Hot environments – Estimation of the heat stress on working man, based on the WBGT-index (wet bulb globe temperature).”

  • The term “Sick Building Syndrome” (SBS) refers to a condition affecting office workers, typically marked by headaches and respiratory problems, attributed to unhealthy or stressful factors in the working environment, such as poor ventilation or substandard indoor climate.
  • International ANSI/ASHRAE Standard 62.1 – 2013 (Ventilation for Acceptable Indoor Air Quality) and ANSI/ASHRAE Standard 55 – 2013 (Thermal Environmental Conditions for Human Occupancy) are used to determine conformance levels of:
    • Carbon Dioxide (CO2);
    • Carbon Monoxide (CO);
    • Relative Humidity; and
    • Temperatures.
  • Monitoring may also include microbial activity and legionella tests.
  • Additional monitoring of organic vapours and airborne dust may also be included as part of an indoor air quality monitoring survey.

  • Ventilation is the process of supplying air to, or removing air from any space by natural or mechanical means.
  • Ventilation monitoring may include general air movement, extraction efficiency, fume cupboard and spray booth ventilation.
  • SANS 10400-O: The application of the National Building Regulations (Part O: Lighting and Ventilation) is used to determine if a room is ventilated as per requirements.
  • Extraction ventilation efficiency monitoring is performed, amongst others, according to methods described in HSG 258 “Controlling Airborne Contaminants at Work: A Guide to Local Exhaust Ventilation (LEV) and ANSI/ASHRAE Standard 110-2016 – Methods of Testing Performance of Laboratory Fume Hoods.”

  • Ergonomics is an applied science concerned with the interaction between people and their workspaces, tools, tasks and equipment, and aims to reduce the physical stress and resulting injuries associated with working.
  • Baseline ergonomic risk assessments are performed according to widely researched methods.