Within the Mineral processing industry, the mined ore undergoes literally thousands of different processes some are highly mechanized including crushing, grinding, cleaning, separating, drying, re-sizing and some are more manual including extraction, handling, dumping, and transferring. Both individually and collectively these processes generate significant amounts of dust.
In most mining operations the generation of respirable silica dust during mining is the primary hazard. Inhalation of coal and crystalline silica dust can lead to serious, sometimes fatal lung diseases such as pneumoconiosis (CWP), silicosis, tuberculosis, chronic bronchitis and emphysema which are becoming increasingly common. In fact, the NIOSH has classified crystalline silica as a potential occupational carcinogen. In effect, these respirable dusts are destructive to the surrounding environment and population as well. Many minerals lose large amounts of material to undersized fine particles which can become airborne. For example, it is estimated the phosphate industry loses 30% to fines. So, there is typically copious amounts of airborne dust which further solidifies the hazards.
Exposure to these dusts 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.