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The amount of exposure to which a person is at risk can have a detrimental effect to their health, both short and long term.

A personal sampling survey is required to measure the hazardous substance in the workplace air and guidance is given on how to control this. 


Using specialised meters that attach to the operator, a test of the current

exposure is completed. The reading is then sent of to a UKAS authorised 

laboratory for analysis. 


We provide a full personal sampling service and a detailed report once your

results have come back from the laboratory.


Exposure measurement is required:


  • for COSHH assessment, to help in selecting the right controls

  • where there is a serious risk to health from inhalation of the substance

  • to check that exposure limited are not exceeded

  • to check that your exposure controls work well enough, or if you need improvements

  • to check that new controls work well enough

  • to help choose the right level of respirator protection

  • after process of production changes that mean exposure may have changed

  • to show any need for health surveillance or

  • when an inspector issues you with an 'improvement notice' requiring monitoring. 


Exposure measurement is not an alternative to controlling exposure. Measurements are best done after controls have been applied. 


Exposures vary from day to day. They may be higher on another day when no measurements were taken.


If the results for a given task are below one third of the exposure limit, your controls are probably good enough.


How do we sample air?


  1. By using a variety of methods from using specialised meters, smoke tubes or colorimetric detector tubes to see if there is a problem with your controls.

  2. We also sometimes use biological monitoring to detect exposure through skin contact, by swallowing, or if respirators are not working well enough. 


Things to remember


It is best to complete personal sampling on a day when everything is working normally (unless you need a sample for a specific process such as plant maintenance). Personal sampling is primarily for the individual operators in close contact with the hazardous substance, however, we can also monitor background (static) samples to tell where substances escape into the workplace. 


We provide contextual information with regards to operators performance, work pattern, controls used, and work environment. While undertaking the personal sampling test we provide full commentary on how exposure routes flow and any training we can provide to help you maintain or improve the controls, future monitoring needs and where appropriate, advice on health surveillance. 


Our Personal Sampling report includes: 


  • background to, and the purpose of the survey

  • the process measured, the work patterns and the hazards involved

  • the control measures in place and their performance

  • photographs and diagrams

  • what measurements were taken (long and short-term)

  • how and where samples were analysed

  • exposure limit or exposure benchmarks, and whether these are protective of health

  • any industry standards of good control practice 

  • results related to plan of process. This includes how 8-hour time-weighted average concentrations were calculated.



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