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NOISE ENGINEERING DESIGN
When hearing protection and administrative controls cannot be employed to reduce noise exposures, EI’s engineering team assists our industrial clients in the identification and design of noise engineering controls. Engineering controls for excessive noise can be developed for isolated pieces of manufacturing equipment or entire industrial process lines. Initial steps require performing sounds level facility surveys and personnel noise dosimeter monitoring of manufacturing personnel by experienced industrial hygienists. Noise monitoring results are utilized to determine specific sources of excessive noise, as well as the mechanism of sound generation/propagation emitted by the excessive noise source. Multiple sources of noise will subsequently be “rank ordered”, which will allow for a range of possible engineering controls, typically addressing the loudest sound sources first. EI’s professionals segregate excessive noise sources into two distinct classes, vibrational noise and noise turbulence.
Once all specific noise sources are identified, EI utilizes the following logical approach to determine the optimal systems to reduce/control excessive noise:
- Substitution of equipment (fundamental first step)
- Categorization of source into vibrational noise and turbulence-based noise
- Reduction of driving forces which cause excessive noise
a. Decreasing machine speed
b. Maintaining dynamic balance
c. Provide vibrational isolation
d. Increasing impact duration, while reducing the force of impact
- Reduce response of vibrating surfaces
- Reduce area of vibrating surfaces
- Reorienting directional noise sources
- Reduction in velocity of fluid flow (air ejection systems, valves, vents and piping)
- Provide sound absorption alternatives
- Design and installation of equipment and personnel noise enclosures
Let EI’s team of industrial hygienists and engineers work collaboratively to identify and provide cost-effective engineering solutions aimed at reducing exposure of your workforce to excessive noise.
IN NEED OF OUR SERVICES?
EI’s commitment to service has been amply demonstrated on past projects. Yet again, this commitment has been clearly demonstrated by nimble agility of short notice staff scheduling. The dedicated professionals of The EI Group have exceeded our expectations.
The pandemic has disrupted life as we know it and caused restrictions on public gatherings. How can Environmental, Energy, Health & Safety professionals learn from each other, and exchange ideas? For 2020, The North Carolina Manufacturers Associations (NCMA) is hosting its Environmental Energy Health & Safety (EEHS) School as a virtual event.
Lessons Learned from Occupational COVID-19 Screening – Part III: Tips for an Effective COVID-19 Screening Process
Maintaining continuity of technicians who perform screening is one of the most important aspects for the effective identification of coronavirus carriers. Developing rapport with employees during COVID-19 screening, especially when administering the COVID-19 screening questionnaire, is imperative. Having consistent personnel perform COVID-19 screening day after day creates an environment of trust.
Adequate planning for an occupational screening process is key for an efficient and effective operation to identify potential coronavirus carriers BEFORE they enter the workspace. Will the screening operation be staffed using the existing workforce or by engaging a third party? If staffed internally, do these “in-house” employees have sufficient training in PPE and bloodborne pathogen control? What types of PPE will be used?
Testing wastewater for the presence of pathogens as a surveillance tool has been used by for many years (Poliovirus and antimicrobial resistance (AMR) as an example). This public health tool is now being utilized during the current pandemic to detect SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) by analyzing wastewater samples from public and private wastewater systems for non-infective RNA fragments of the virus.
EI’s next two blog entries will focus on the major points garnered from our field experience during screening of 120,000 employees to identify potential COVID-19 carriers as they reported to work at numerous manufacturing/pharma/biopharma facilities over the past 6 months. During the COVID-19 screening process, in order to minimize potential COVID-19 transmission in the workplace, EI employed the New Rochelle Incident Command model for coronavirus testing, where employee body temperature and a standardized COVID-19 questionnaire was administered from their vehicles as employees arrived to work.
There is no doubt that the COVID-19 pandemic deserves the attention and resources it continues to receive in the American workplace. Numerous EHS managers who built their careers on anticipating the unexpected wonder how they failed to see this crisis coming. As businesses look for any light at the end of the tunnel, health and safety professionals vow to learn from this coronavirus experience and use its distinct lessons to prepare EHS programs for the future.
EI continues to closely monitor the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and provide our clients and the general public with current, relevant guidance based on our experience with Occupational Health, Industrial Hygiene, Safety Compliance and Engineering services performed during the pandemic. We have documented our progress, shared our learnings, and offered our insight for managing/minimizing exposures through our blog, which launched on January 27, 2020.
Beginning this month, the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) will launch a new statewide lead hazard reduction program. This $5.6 million grant award will provide lead paint remediation services to income-qualified families across the Commonwealth.
On April 10, 2020, OSHA issued a memorandum which relaxed the rules for recording cases of COVID-19 on the OSHA 300. EI first reported on this topic back on April 15, 2020. More recently, OSHA issued another memorandum intended to provide guidance for compliance officers, rescinding those earlier restrictions and returning to standard recordkeeping practices for all employers as of May 26, 2020.
In the early 1970s, OSHA was established by the Federal government to prevent work related injuries, illnesses, and fatalities. Given the comprehensive nature of OSHA compliance and the lack of familiarity by manufacturing company management with worker health and safety compliance, the demand for “in-house” medical and safety professionals grew rapidly. Between the mid-1970s and mid-1980s, the percentage of industrial operations with 250+ manufacturing employees, who had “in-house” occupational health nurse (OHN) support to assist with OSHA compliance initiatives, was high.