The importance of industrial indoor air quality shouldn’t be overlooked. It can have a lasting effect on the productivity and health of any business. Adequate indoor air quality should be a top priority for managers and plant operators.
Indoor air quality (IAQ) is the condition of the breathable air inside of or surrounding a structure. IAQ takes into account the amount of outside air finding its way into the building, temperature, humidity, and airborne contaminants. Poor-quality inside air causes negative health effects, with the Environmental Protection Agency declaring indoor air pollution a top five environmental public health risk.
Airborne contaminants have a litany of causes. One common factor is unregulated or outdated systems releasing harmful gases into the air, like carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide. Non-biological particles like synthetic fibers become inhalable at a diameter of 10 micrometers or less. Air pollution could also originate from microbial contaminants such as fungi, bacteria, and dust mites.
Volatile organic compounds (VOC) are the most common indoor air pollutants. VOCs are 10 times more likely to arise indoors instead of outdoors and can come from household items like solvents, pesticides, adhesives, paints, and disinfectants. Negative effects of VOCs can include difficulty breathing, harm to your central nervous system, and irritated eyes.
What can organizations do to take get on top of this issue? A solid first step is to take readings on air quality and notice which contaminants are present. Once enough information has been collected, solutions can be discussed on how to combat them. It’s also smart to equip all workers with adequate safety gear. U.S. workers across the country wear respirators to protect themselves against harmful dusts, smokes, gases, vapors, and low oxygen levels.
All businesses should ensure the safety of their workers and the quality upkeep of their equipment from airborne pollutants. For more information on how to improve IAQ at your place of business, please see the accompanying guide created by Kelair Dampers.
Guide created by Kelair Dampers, a leading butterfly dampers manufacturer