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How to avoid the risk of exposure to carcinogens in the workplace

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How to avoid the risk of exposure to carcinogens in the workplace

It is estimated that in Spain more than three million workers have a history of occupational exposure to substances capable of producing cancer.

BY RRHHDigital, 04:45 – 20 August 2021

It is one of the most dreaded and common diseases in society. Many products and certain behaviors are the vehicle for the body to suffer from cancer, but there are industrial and commercial sectors in which exposure is not optional.

Although the legislation establishes the right to protection of health in the workplace, every year many workers fall ill as a result of direct contact with carcinogens in the performance of their duties.

Studies have shown that there are nearly 40 times more deaths from occupational cancer than from accidents, among work-related substances that can cause cancer, among others, silica, fumes from diesel engines, rubber products or benzenes.

What can be done to reduce exposure to these agents?

Given the strength of the data, the guide prepared by Fraternidad-Muprespa sheds light on the detection of these carcinogens which must always be correctly marked, identified and used. It also summarizes the preventive measures to be adopted by workers whose tasks involve the use of these agents, thanks to clear guidelines:

Inform workers about the existence and identification of agents Make employers aware of the risks for their workers Analyze their representation in the different sectors and Encourage the development of healthy habits and good practices that limit use in the least possible way dangerous for the worker. If the substitution of a carcinogenic agent is not technically possible, the employer must guarantee the prevention and reduction of exposure by specific measures of personal hygiene and individual protection: Prohibit eating, drinking or smoke in the work area where there is a risk of exposure to store work clothes or protective equipment and street clothes Have ten minutes to clean up before lunch and another ten minutes before leaving work, in the working day Take charge of washing and decontaminating work clothes, as it is prohibited to perform this task at the worker’s home

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