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Date PostedOctober 28, 2012

Things you should know about Hazmat Incidents

Hazmat Exercise

Source : Georgia National Guard

Hazmat cases involve chemicals and other materials that can cause harm to workers and other people, property or the environment through fire, explosion, reaction or release.

The risk involved with hazmat on site can be minimised by:

  • Attempting to eliminate the hazard.
  • If elimination is not possible, attempt to substitute it with something less hazardous.
  • Engineering controls and administrative controls should be the attempted next if substitution does not sufficiently minimise the risk. An example would be to separate a process from people by distance or barriers.
  • The final approach should be the provision and training on PPE. That includes clothing like respirators, gloves or eye protection that is suitable for the material, the task and the operator and is fitted to the worker. These PPE must be worn at all times and must comply with relevant Australian Standards.
  • These controls and PPE must be properly maintained and kept in good working order to ensure they are effective in minimising exposure to the hazardous chemical/material.
  • Employers should monitor and control the amount and level of the hazardous material in the air so that a worker’s exposure is kept to a minimum.

Workers must be regularly consulted on the effectiveness of current safety procedures and should feel free to raise any concerns.



Peter Cutforth is a Director at Urban E-Learning, a global elearning and web strategy firm based in George St Brisbane. Peter's interests extend to training, safety and compliance, online marketing, and Mobile Apps.

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