Operations forming part of the bakery industry’s production process expose workers to hazardous substances, such as dust from flour and other ingredients. This dust inhalation exposure is a health risk factor.
The main hazard is nose irritation (rhinitis), a problem that can become more serious as workers continuously breathe in flour dust. Rhinitis can cause breathing difficulties, shortness of breath attacks and the development of asthma
Eye irritation is another of the dust-related hazards and it varies according to each worker’s sensitivity. It should be emphasised that workers who are allergic to flour dust should not be assigned to dusty environments.
The adoption of best working, hygiene and safety practices, which reduce dust emissions and the amount of time that workers are exposed to dust, is an obligation that employers must meet.
The best systems are those that opt for integrated collective safety, for:
- e use of equipment with adequate safety covers;
- the introduction of work organisation measures;
- and the proper storage of products and raw materials;
- the use of PPE appropriate to each task (masks, gloves, goggles and protective clothing).
- The worker empties the sack next from the spiral mixer, raises dust and does not use a mask.
- The worker empties the sack next to the spiral mixer and uses a masks.
- The worker empties the sack away from the spiral mixer and uses a masks.
- The worker sprinkles the flower by hand, releasing dust.
- The worker uses a flour shaker.
- When sweeping, flour dust is released into the air.
- Using a vacuum cleaner for cleaning does not throw flour dust up into the air.
Source – images: ACT