Free site survey for manufacturers using silica based products

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is continuing to run its inspection programme targeting manufacturing businesses using materials that contain silica.

Inspections are taking place across the UK to ensure duty holders understand the risks associated with inhalation of respirable crystalline silica (RCS) and have effective controls in place to keep workers safe and protect their respiratory health.

Filtermist is offering a FREE, no obligation site survey to ensure your control measures are fit for purpose and meeting legislation.

Click here to book a visit.

Protect your team

Exposure to respirable crystalline silica (RCS) dust can have serious effects on the health of your employees. Exposure can cause serious skin conditions and even damage to the lungs and airways. The main dust related diseases affecting construction workers are:

  • Lung Cancer – caused by heavy and prolonged exposure to RCS dust.
  • Silicosis – this disease makes breathing difficult and increases the risk of lung infections. It can take years to develop but extremely high exposure could speed this up and cause someone to become ill quite quickly. There is no cure – but it is preventable.
  • Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disorder (COPD) - This is a group of lung diseases, including bronchitis and emphysema, resulting in severe breathlessness, prolonged coughing and chronic disability.

According to the HSE it’s estimated that deaths from lung cancer associated with exposure to RCS dust number around 600 per year with 450 of these occurring from exposures in the construction sector.

Silica dust

Silica is a natural mineral that exists in various forms, including sand, quartz and flint but it’s also found in materials such as concrete and mortar.

Silica dust can be generated by tasks such as cutting, drilling and grinding; and silica can also be found in foundry sands, fettlings and kiln linings. Silica is broken into dust which can be fine enough to be inhaled and reach deep inside the lung - this is known as respirable crystalline silica (RCS) and can cause harm to health.

Non-silica dust

There are some construction products where silica is not found or is only present in very low amounts. The most common include gypsum, cement, limestone, marble and dolomite, though this dust can also mix with silica dust when cutting things like bricks.

The HSE sets a long-term Workplace Exposure Limit for every industry and a full list can be found on the HSE website. Breaching of these standards can result in severe penalties, loss of productivity due to employee sickness and even legal action. For small or large businesses, looking after employee health by reducing dust exposure is vitally important.


Filtermist manufactures dust control equipment that utilises either media-based filtration or liquid separation under the Dustcheck brand – one of very few UK manufacturers that can offer both solutions. This means we are not restricted by a limited product range and are able to specify the optimal solution for any application.   We also provide a comprehensive aftermarket service to ensure control measures are operating as intended.

Effective dust control is vital in any manufacturing industry. The equipment we supply includes venting and extraction solutions for typical applications such as bag tipping, bulk silo venting, conveying and mixing, as well as packing, crushing, and drilling and screening.

Designed for you

We source and supply equipment with various standards of construction. We typically specify mild steel, however, our engineers also consider the method of construction based on the product’s wear characteristics and product flow – for heavy dust loads for example.

Whether the application is process related – where the product being handled is a process ingredient (process venting) – or the application is handling fugitive emissions from the process (dust extraction or Local Exhaust Ventilation (LEV)) – we have a solution that will fit your need.

All the filters we supply come with ATEX rated options meaning potentially explosive and volatile products can be handled safely; and, although not a typical requirement within the industry, can be built to comply with Dangerous Substances and Explosive Atmospheres Regulations (DSEAR) too.

We also offer a wide range of filter cartridges and bag media which are able to handle products from the coarsest to the finest - from the freest flowing product to the most cohesive. Our in-house design team is able to provide dust control systems to fit almost any space constraints so we can ensure we provide the right fit for your work-space – inside or outdoors.

Aftermarket Support

Filtermist's aftermarket team can provide a range of services to help ensure you're inspection ready. These include:

We also provide remedial works for Local Exhaust Ventilation (LEV) Equipment to address problems and equipment efficiency, improve a system, expand a process, improve production performance or to bring something into compliance with LEV equipment standards and legislation.

We can:

  • Support with extraction systems following machine relocations
  • Connecting new machines to existing extraction systems
  • Specifying and installing LEV system modifications / upgrades
  • Providing LEV improvements in line with test recommendations
  • Undertaking LEV equipment repairs
  • Installing LEV equipment for a change of process

Qualified Engineers

Filtermist's qualified LEV Engineers provide routine and reactive maintenance, and COSHH compliant LEV Testing for all makes and models of Local Exhaust Ventilation systems (LEV) throughout the UK.

A digital job report is sent to the customer at the end of each visit, making it easy to file and retrieve if necessary.

COSHH (Control of Substances Hazardous to Health) regulations require all LEV systems to be tested by a competent person at least once every 14 months - sometimes more frequently depending on the application. More details can be found on page 85 of HSE publication HSG258 'Controlling airborne contaminants at work'.

If you'd like to speak to one of our team to find out how we can help keep your working environment clean, safe and COSHH compliant click here to send an enquiry.