Foundry work consists of several specialized, interlocking processes including mold and core making, melting and pouring, shakeout and core knockout, cleaning, chipping, and finishing. All produce various dangerous fumes and hazardous dusts. For example, casting sand, fettling and kiln lining contain silica which produces hazardous respirable crystalline silica.
There are many dangerous fumes and dusts associated with foundry work. When processing metal from ore, large emissions of sulfur oxide and particulates are present and when producing alloys several metallic fumes and dusts form. The levels of dust including respirable dust and silica are the biggest threat as the airborne particles, often invisible to the naked eye, enter into the respiratory tract and can cause disabling, progressive lung diseases that lead to difficulties in oxygen transfer into the bloodstream and are potentially fatal including lung cancer and silicosis. Other harmful foundry process emissions including acidic pollutant gases and dioxins/furans must also be controlled and minimized to protect the employees, ensure cost-efficient production, and comply with legal regulations to protect the environment.
Exposure to these dusts and fumes is governed by OSHA and monitored by other organizations that regulate safety. We highly recommend familiarizing yourself with the statutory parameters. View Laws & Regulations
To minimize these risks, implement quality air filtration products and systems. Below, is an outline of the solutions we recommend.