UK union launches silica dust exposure register
Publish date: 07 August 2019
Issue Number: 298
Diary: Legalbrief Workplace
Workers in the UK who believe they have been exposed to silica dust are being urged to sign a register that will help them with legal cases if they develop a long-term health condition. Personnel Today quotes labour union Unite as saying that signing its register could provide evidence if an employee takes legal action as a result of being diagnosed with a disease caused by respirable crystalline silica. The report says inhaling large volumes of the dust over a long period can cause silicosis – a serious respiratory condition that can lead to potentially fatal illnesses including lung cancer, tuberculosis and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Workers in industries including mining, quarrying, construction, glass manufacturing and stonemasonry could be exposed to the dust over long periods of time, which could put their health at risk if dust suppression measures or personal protective equipment is not used.