What are the health hazards in ceramic work?


There are trades and crafts which carry a certain margin of risk arising from, for example, the type of equipment or materials used. Jobs which require the occasional or continuous use of ceramics are a part of these.

Ceramic industry workers respiratory risks

Every profession has a certain risk margin deriving from the type of equipment or materials used. Jobs which require the occasional or continuous use of ceramics are a part of these professions.

Ceramic material, when cut or processed, releases dust that can become very dangerous to the health of workers. Plumbers, bricklayers and craftsmen are the most at risk whether they work in factories or are self-employed. Very often one does not pay enough attention to safety regulations, either because of job pressure or lack of knowledge.

It is essential, however, to think about one’s health and to use the proper equipment in order to avoid the health risks associated with ceramic work.

Among the risks related to ceramic processing are those to the respiratory system. A persistent and prolonged exposure to silica dust, the most aggressive component of ceramics, can lead to health problems ranging from simple irritation to more serious diseases of which unfortunately one hears about more and more often. Fortunately though, there are particular devices specifically designed to eliminate all risks.

Does the use of specific RPD help protect the respiratory system?

Yes they do. These devices are essential to avoid the risks associated with ceramic processing, particularly face masks which protect from dust, vapours and fumes releases by the ceramics and other potentially hazardous materials as well. The best models are those powered by a blower unit. They are lightweight and compact at the same time and protect nose, mouth and respiratory tract without constraint or discomfort. These face masks, equipped with blower units which convey clean filtered air to the inside of the mask,  ensure proper protection and facilitate breathing. They are recommended for all those professions that use products or apply techniques that require particular attention, i.e, in the agricultural, industrial and construction sectors.

How does a mask of this type work? A battery-powered blower unit conveys clean, breathable air to the inside of the mask after having drawn it through filters mounted to the blower unit itself or directly on the mask.

Exhaled air, and any excess air, is then expelled through an exhalation valve. Positive pressure builds up inside the mask and this facilitates breathing. Furthermore there is an intrinsic pressure sensor in some of the models to regulate the airflow. Compared to the early models, modern face masks are very comfortable to wear, ergonomic and compact. Some models are cordless and do not require breathing hoses as the blower units get mounted directly onto the mask. Furthermore they are powered by batteries which guarantee a running time of 8 hours minimum.

KASCO srl supplies various types of RPD and, among these, is an innovative  respirator recommended for use when processing ceramic which complies with various international Standards including those of the European Union.