August 03, 2016

NIOSH’s Engineering Controls Database

Brennan Lockwood and Trudi McCleery, MPH, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

The hierarchy of controls shows us that engineering controls can protect workers by eliminating or reducing hazardous conditions to acceptable exposure levels. The idea behind the hierarchy is that the control methods at the top of the graphic are potentially more effective and protective than those at the bottom. Following the hierarchy of controls can lead to safer systems, where the risk of illness or injury has been substantially reduced.  Examples of controls include elimination, substitution, local exhaust ventilation to capture and remove airborne emissions, or machine guards to protect the worker. Well-designed engineering controls can be highly effective in protecting workers. Controls generally do not interfere with worker productivity or personal comfort and make the work easier to perform rather than more difficult. The initial cost of engineering controls can be higher than some other protective methods, but over the longer term, operating costs are frequently lower, and in some instances, can provide a cost savings. The new NIOSH Engineering Controls Database provides information on effective engineering controls.  You can search by occupation or work process to find a solution that may work to control the exposure in your workplace. ... more

Posted In: Health and Safety

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