Asphalt is used for producing hard surfaces like driveways, walkways and even streets. It is used because it is a durable material tht is resilient and low maintenance. There are some basic things to know if you work with asphalt. In this brief article we will consider some simple concepts to keep in mind about asphalt including how to work around it safely.
Uses for Asphalt
As mentioned asphalt is used for various surfaces found under your feet. In fact, it is used in road construction frequently. However, it is also used in the roofing industry. Therefore, it is one of the materials that can produce
harmful construction dust that should be controlled. Let's look at why it is dangerous.
Why Asphalt Can Be Dangerous
As with many surface materials, asphalt contains several substances. One such substance that is found in asphalt is respirable crystalline silica. Note what one
document from the National Institutes of Health said regarding this:
The removal of the road surface has the potential to release respirable crystalline silica, to which workers can be exposed.
The paper goes on to explain the various activities and other tasks through which a worker can be exposed to dangerous dust particles. We won't get into the details here though. This article is more about making construction professionals aware of some of the risks of working around asphalt in construction environments and what types of tasks could produce a dusty environment. Additionally, knowing about
dust collection solutions can be very beneficial in the long run.
Safely Working With Asphalt
Paving may be the first profession that comes to mind when you think of asphalt. After all, it is used extensively in the paving of roads, driveways and other hard surfaces. However it is also used in the roofing industry. Still, working with this material in its solid form can be a hazard. If you are working around a construction site where dust from roofing materials and/or paving materials is generated, then be sure you research and act on safety precautions given regarding hazardous dust and construction sites.