Some substances that we are exposed to at work can have a detrimental affect on our health. These substances include chemical, fumes, dusts and fibres. Exposures of hazardous substances can occur by a variety of methods including: ingestion, absorption, consumption, inhalation and contact.
HSE Document EH40 tells us about Workplace Exposures Limits (WELs) of particular substances which are subject to the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (COSHH) Regulations.
Some substances are particularly dangerous or have complex affects on the body, and are there for regulated separately eg Lead and Asbestos.
The effects of exposures to dangerous substances can be immediate or latent; either way, assessing and controlling exposure is important to protect peoples health within their work environment.