Schedule – XIV

 

Handling and processing of Asbestos, manufacture of any article of Asbestos  and any other process of manufacture or otherwise in which Asbestos is used in any form.

 

(Model Factories Rules 120 (MFR 120) under Section 87)

 

1.            Application.-                 

 

(1)       This schedule shall apply to all manufacturing process as defined under Section 2(k) of the Act, carried on in a factory involving exposure of workers to asbestos and/or product containing Asbestos.

 

(2)       The Government may, at any time, for the purpose of giving effect to any scientific proof obtained from specialised institutions or experts in the field, notification in the Office Gazette, make suitable changes in the said schedule:

 

(3)       The provisions of this schedule shall apply to all workers exposed to asbestos in the factory and it shall be the responsibility of the occupier of the factory to comply with the provisions of the schedule in respect of the workers.

 

(4)       (a)         The occupier of the factory wherein asbestos or substances containing asbestos are in use, shall prepare work procedures and practices, in the light of scientific research and technological progress for approval by the Chief Inspector and shall follow only such approved procedures.

 

(b)       Notwithstanding anything mentioned in sub-paragraph (1) use of asbestos is prohibited in the manufacturing process as may be notified by the Government in this behalf.

 

             (c)        (i)         spraying of all forms of asbestos is prohibited in a factory.

(ii)        The prohibition in respect of spraying of asbestos referred to in sub-para (i) may be exempted by the Chief Inspector if the Occupier represents that such spraying is inevitable certain purposes provided adequate measures for ensuring the safety and health of workers are undertaken by the occupier to the satisfaction of the Chief Inspector.

2.            Definition.-

 

For the purpose of this Schedule –

 

(a)       “asbestos” means any fibrous silicate mineral and any  admixture containing actionlite, amosite, anthophyllite,   chrysotile, crocidolite,  tremolite or any mixture thereof,  whether  crude,  crushed or opened;

(b)       “asbestos textiles” means yarn or clothes composed of asbestos or asbestos mixed with any other materials;

(c)        “approved”  means approved for the time being in writing by  the Chief Inspector;

(d)       “breathing  apparatus”  means  a  helmet  or  face  piece   with necessary  connection  by  means  of which  a  person  using  it breathes air free from dust, or any other approved apparatus;

(e)       “efficient exhaust  draught” means a localised  ventilation  by mechanical  means for the removal of dust so as to prevent  dust from escaping into air of any place in which work is carried on. No  draught  shall  be  deemed to be efficient  which  fails  to  control dust produced at the point where such dust originates;

(f)        “preparing”  means  crushing,  disintegrating,  and  any other processes in or incidental to the opening of asbestos;

(g)       “protective clothing” means overalls and head covering,  which (in either case) will when worn exclude asbestos dust;

(h)       “asbestos dust” means airborne particles of asbestos or settled particles of asbestos which are liable to become airborne in the factory;

(i)         “airborne asbestos dust” means, for the purposes of measurement, dust particles measured by gravimetric assessment or other equivalent method;

(j)         “repairable asbestos fibres” means asbestos fibres having diameter of less than 3 micrometre and a length to diameter ratio greater than 3:1;

(k)        “exposure to asbestos” means exposure to airborne repairable asbestos fibres or asbestos dust; whether originating from asbestos or from minerals, materials or products containing asbestos in the factory.

 

2-A      Demolition of plants or structures –

 

No person shall carry out any demolition of plants or structures containing friable asbestos insulation material and removal of asbestos from building or structures in which asbestos is liable to become air-borne, unless he is recognized and duly empowered by the Chief Inspector of Factories as qualified to carry out such work in accordance with the provisions of this Schedule. 

 

3.         Tools  and equipment.-

 

Any tools or equipment used in processes to which this schedule applies shall be such that they do not create asbestos dust above the permissible limit or are equipped with efficient exhaust draught.

 

4.         Exhaust draught.-

 

(1)         An effective exhaust draught shall be provided and maintained to control dust from the following processes and machines  as per the relevant National Standards -

(a)      manufacture and conveying machinery namely -

(i)         preparing, grinding, or dry mixing machines;

(ii)        carding, card waste and ring spinning machines, and looms;

 (iii)      machines or other plant fed with asbestos;

 (iv)      machines  used for the sawing, grinding, turning,  drilling, abrading  or  polishing; in  the  dry  state,  of  articles  composed wholly or partly of asbestos;

(b)       cleaning,  and  grinding of the cylinders or other  parts  of  a carding machine;

(c)        chambers, hoppers or other structures into which loose  asbestos  is delivered or

                 passes;

(d)       work-benches   for   asbestos  waste  sorting   or   for   other manipulation or  

                  asbestos by hand;

(e)       workplaces  at which the filling or emptying of sacks, skips  or other portable

                  containers, weighing or other process  incidental thereto which is effected by

                  hand, is carried on;

(f)        sack cleaning machines;

(g)       mixing and blending of asbestos by hand; and

   (h)       any other  process  in which dust is given off  into  the  work environment.

(2)       Exhaust ventilation equipment provided in accordance with  sub-paragraph  (1)  shall, while any work of maintenance or repair to the machinery, apparatus or other plant or equipment in connection with which it is provided is being carried  on,  be kept  in use so as to produce an exhaust draught which prevents the entry of asbestos dust  into the air of any work place.

(3)       Arrangements shall be made to prevent asbestos dust discharged from exhaust apparatus being drawn into the air of any workroom.

(4)       The  asbestos  bearing  dust removed from any  workroom  by  the exhaust  system  shall be collected in suitable  receptacles  or  filter bags which shall be isolated from all work areas.

 

5.   Testing and examination of ventilating systems.-

 

(1)       All  ventilating systems used for the purpose of  extracting  or suppressing dust as required by this schedule shall be as per the relevant Indian Standards, examined and inspected once every week by a responsible person.  It shall be thoroughly examined and tested by a competent person once in every period of 12 months. Any defects found by such examinations or test shall be rectified forthwith.

 

(2)       A register containing particulars of such examination and tests and the state of the plant and the repairs or alternations (if any) found to be necessary shall be kept and shall be available for inspection by an Inspector.

 

6.   Segregation  in  case  of certain process.-

 

Mixing  or  blending  of  asbestos  by  the  hand,  or  making  or repairing  of   insulating mattresses  composed  wholly  or partly of  asbestos  shall  not  be carried on in any room in which any other work is done.

                                         

7.   Storage and distribution of loose asbestos.-

 

(1) All loose asbestos shall, while not in use, be kept in suitable closed receptacles which prevent the escape of asbestos dust there from.  Such asbestos shall not be distributed within a factory except in closed receptacles or in a totally enclosed system of conveyance.

 

8. Asbestos sacks

 

(1)       All sacks used as receptacles for the purpose of transport of asbestos within the factory shall be constructed of impermeable materials and shall be kept in good repair.

 

(2)       A sack which has contained asbestos shall not be cleaned by hand beating but by a machine, complying with paragraph 4.

 

(3)       Asbestos sacks or receptacles which contain asbestos shall be disposed off in a safe manner.

 

9.   Maintenance of floors and workplaces.-

 

(1)       In every room in which any of the requirements of this  schedule apply -

(a)       the floors, work-benches, machinery and plant shall be kept in a clean  state and  free  from  asbestos debris and  suitable arrangements  shall  be  made for the storage  of  asbestos  not immediately required for use; and

(b)       the floors shall be kept free from any materials, plant or other articles  not immediately  required for the work carried  on  in the room, which would construct the proper cleaning of the floor.

(2)       The cleaning as mentioned  in sub-rule (1) shall so  far  as  is practicable,  as  carried  out  by  means  of  vacuum   cleaning equipment so designed and constructed and so used that  asbestos dust neither escapes nor is discharged into the air of any  work place.

 

(3)       When  the  cleaning   is  done by any  method  other  than  that mentioned  in  sub-paragraph (2),  the  persons  doing  cleaning work  and  any  other  person employed in  that  room  shall  be provided  with respiratory protective  equipment and  protective clothing.

 

(4)       The  vacuum  cleaning   equipment  used  in  accordance with provisions of sub-paragraph (2), shall be properly maintained and after  each  cleaning  operation, its surfaces kept in  a  clean state and free from asbestos waste and dust.

 

(5)       Asbestos waste shall not be permitted to remain on the floors or  other  surfaces  at the work place at the end   of  the  working shift  and  shall  be  transferred  without  delay  to  suitable receptacles.   Any  spillage of asbestos  waste occurring  during  the  course  of  the  work at any  time  shall  be  removed  and  transferred  to  the  receptacles  maintained  for  the  purpose  without delay.

 

9          (A) The occupier shall replace asbestos or of certain types of asbestos or products containing asbestos by other materials or products or shall use alternative technology, scientifically evaluated as harmless or less harmful, wherever this is possible.

(B) The occupier should take all the measures to prevent or control the release of asbestos in to the air and to ensure that the exposure limits or other exposure criteria are complied with and also reduce exposure to as low as a level as is reasonably practicable.

 10.      Breathing Apparatus, Personnel Protective Equipment and Clothing:

(1)       The occupier of every factory to which this schedule applies shall provide to workers personnel protective equipments such as hand gloves shoes helmets, goggles earplug, aprons safety belt, overall suit, etc. as per the relevant National or International Standards as may be required.

 

The approved breathing apparatus and appropriate work clothing as per the relevant National or international standards in consultation with the workers representatives and maintained in good conditions for use of every person employed -

(a)       in chambers containing loose asbestos;

(b)       in cleaning, dust settling or filtering chambers of apparatus;

(c)        in cleaning  the cylinders, including the defer cylinders,  or other parts  of a carding machine by means of hand-stickles;

(d)       in filling, beating, or levelling in the manufacture or  repair of insulating mattresses; and

(e)       in any other operation or circumstances  in  which  it  is impracticable to adopt technical means to control asbestos  dust  in the work environment within the permissible limit.

 

(2)       Suitable accommodation  in  conveniently  accessible  position shall  be  provided for the use of persons when  putting  on  or taking off breathing apparatus and protective clothing  provided  in  accordance  with  this  rule  and  for  the storage  of  such apparatus and clothing when not in use.

 

(3)       All breathing apparatus and protective clothing not in use shall be stored in the accommodation provided in accordance with sub-rule (2) above.

 

(4)       All  protective  clothing in use shall be  de-dusted  under  an efficient  exhaust  draught or by vacuum cleaning and  shall  be washed   at  suitable  intervals.  The  cleaning  schedule   and procedure  should  be  such  as  to  ensure  the  efficiency  in protective the wearer.

 

(5)       All breathing apparatus shall be cleaned and disinfected at suitable intervals and thoroughly inspected once every month by a responsible person.

 

(6)       A record of the cleaning and maintenance and of the condition of  the  breathing  apparatus  shall  be  maintained  in  a  register  provided for that  purpose which shall be readily available for inspection by an Inspector.

 

(7)       No person shall be employed to perform any work specified in sub-paragraph (1) for which breathing apparatus is necessary to be provided under that sub-paragraph unless he has been fully instructed in the proper use of that equipment.

 

(8)       No  breathing  apparatus provided in pursuance of  sub-paragraph (1)  which has been worn by a person shall be  worn  by  another person  unless  it has been thoroughly cleaned  and  disinfected  since  last being worn and the person has been fully  instructed in the proper use of that equipment.

 

(9)       No worker shall take home any work clothing or special protective clothing or personal protective equipment provided to him for protection against exposure to asbestos.

 

11.       Separate accommodation for personal clothing.-  

 

A separate accommodation  shall  be  provided  in  a  conveniently   accessible position  for  all  persons  employed in  operations  to  which  this schedule applies for storing of personal clothing. This should be separated from the accommodation provided under sub-paragraph (2) of paragraph 10 to prevent contamination of personal clothing.

 

12.       Washing   and bathing facilities.-

 

(1)       There  shall be provided and maintained   in a clean state  and in  good  repair  for the use of all workers   employed  in  the  processes covered by the schedule, adequate washing and  bathing  places   having  a  constant supply of water under cover at  the rate of one such place for every 15 persons  employed.

(2)       The washing places shall have standpipes placed at intervals of   not less than one metre.

(3)       Not less than one half of the total number of washing places shall be provided with bathrooms.

(4)       Sufficient  supply  of clean towels  made of suitable  material  shall be provided:

Provided that such towels shall be supplied individually for each worker if so ordered by the Inspector.

(5)       Sufficient supply of soap and nail brushes shall be provided.

 

13. Mess Room.-

 

(1)       There shall be provided and maintained for the use of all workers employed in the factory  covered by this schedule, remaining on the premises during the rest intervals, a suitable mess room  which shall be furnished with:-

(a)       sufficient  tables  and benches with back rest, and

(b)       adequate means for warming food.

 

14. Prohibition  of employment of young persons.-

 

No young person shall be employed in any of the process covered by this schedule.

 

15. Prohibition  relating to smoking.-

 

No person shall smoke in any area where processes covered by this schedule are carried on.  A notice in the language understood by majority of the workers shall be posted in the plant prohibiting smoking at such areas.

 

16. Pictorial Cautionary  notices.- 

 

Cautionary notices in the form specified in appendix and printed in the language easily read and understood by the majority of the workers shall be displayed in prominent places in the workrooms where asbestos or substances containing asbestos are manufactured, handled or used.

 

 17. Air   monitoring.-  

 

To ensure the effectiveness of control measures in continuous or repetitive processes, the monitoring of asbestos fibres in air as well as personal monitoring of workers shall be carried out at least once in every shift and the result so obtained shall be entered in register and

(a)       There should be no substantial change in workplace conditions.

(b)       The results of the two (2) preceding measurements have not exceeded half the relevant control limit.

 (c)       “All factories should adopt membrane filter test as per the relevant National standards without fail.

 

18. Medical control measures:

 

(1)          The occupier of every factory in which a worker employed in the processes specified in Sub Rule 1, shall ensure that every worker employed be examined by a Medical Inspector of Factories/ Certifying Surgeon within 15 days of his first employment. Such medical examination shall include sputum examination for asbestos bodies, pulmonary function test and chest X Ray - Posterior Anterior (PA) view to be compared with standard ILO Radiographs on Pneumoconiosis. No worker shall be allowed to work after 15 days of his first employment in the factory unless certified fit for such employment by the Certifying Surgeon.

(2)          Every worker employed in the said processes shall be re-examined by a Certifying Surgeon at least once in every twelve months. Such  re-examination shall, wherever  the  Certifying  Surgeon  considers appropriate, include all the tests as specified in  sub-paragraph (1) except chest X-ray which shall be read by a radiologist specialized/ trained  in the field of reading ILO Radiographs on Pneumoconiosis and the chest x-ray which shall be carried out at least once in 3 years.

(3)          Every worker employed in any of the aforesaid processes on the date on which the schedule comes into force shall be radiological examined by the qualified Radiologist at the cost of the occupier using a standard size x-ray plates and the power of the X Ray machine shall be more than 300 milli ampere (mA). The report of such X Ray shall be submitted to the Medical Inspector of Factories / Certifying Surgeon/ Chief Inspector for within three months of the said date.

(4)          If at any time the Medical Inspector of Factories / Certifying Surgeon is of the opinion that a worker is no longer fit for employment in the said process  on  the ground that continuance therein would involve special danger to the health of the worker he shall make a record of  his findings  in the said Certificate and the health register.  The entry of his findings in these documents should also include the period for which he considers that the said person is unfit for work in the said processes. The person so suspended from the process shall be provided with alternate placement facilities unless he fully is incapacitated in the opinion of the Certifying Surgeon, in which case the person affected shall be suitably rehabilitated.

(5)          No person  who  has been found unfit to work as said  in  sub-paragraph (5) above shall be re-employed or permitted to work in the said processes unless the Certifying Surgeon, after  further examination,  again  certifies him fit for employment  in  those  processes.

(6)          If a worker already in employment and declared unfit by the Medical Inspector of Factories / Certifying Surgeon shall not be allowed to work on any of the processes specified in sub rule 1, unless he has been examined again along with standard size chest x-ray plate from a qualified Radiologist, at the cost of the occupier and has been certified to be fit to work on the said processes again.

(7)          For the purpose of medical supervision by the medical practitioner/ certifying surgeon so appointed by the occupier shall be provided for his exclusive use a room in the factory premises which shall be properly cleaned, adequately lighted ventilated and furnished with a screen, a table with office stationary, chairs and other facilities and other instruments including x-ray arrangements for such examinations and such other equipments as may be prescribed by the Chief Inspector for time to time. The medical practitioner so appointed shall perform the following duties

(a)       maintain health register;

(b)       undertake medical supervision of persons employed in the factory;

(c)        look after health, education and rehabilitation of sick, injured or affected workers;

(d)       carry out inspection of work rooms where dangerous operations are carried out and  advise the management of the measures to be adopted for the protection of health of the workers employed therein

 (8)      The Health Records of the workers exposed  to asbestos, shall be kept up to a minimum period of 40 years from the beginning of the employment or 15 years after retirement or cessation of the employment, whichever is later and shall be accessible to workers concerned or their representatives.

(9)       The record of medical examinations and appropriate tests carried out by the said medical practitioner, a certificate of fitness and health shall be maintained in separate register approved by the Chief Inspector of Factories, which shall be kept readily available for inspection by the Inspector and produce on demand.

19.  Exemptions.-

(1)       If in respect of any factory, the Chief Inspector  is satisfied that owing to the exceptional circumstances or infrequency of  the  processes  or  for any other reason,  all or  any  of  the provisions of this schedule is not necessary for protection of  the workers in the factory, the Chief Inspector may by a certificate  in writing, which he may at his discretion revoke at any time,  exempt such factory  from all or any of such provisions  subject  to  such  conditions, if any, as he may specify therein.

(2)       The Chief Inspector may permit temporary derogation, through a notification in an official gazette, from the measures prescribed in this Schedule under conditions and within limits of time determined after consultation with the representative organizations of employers and workers concerned.

 


 

APPENDIX

 

PICTORIAL CAUTIONARY NOTICE

 

1.            Asbestos/asbestos dust which is used, handled or manipulated in this factory is a very hazardous to health.

2.            Prolonged exposure to asbestos dust may lead to serious diseases like lung fibrosis (Asbestosis) and lung cancer.

3.            Entry is prohibited without protective equipment.

4.            Wear the Protective Equipments to safeguard your health.

5.            No food stuffs or drinks shall be brought into this area.

6.            Smoking, eating food or drinking and chewing tobacco in this area is prohibited.

7.            Scrupulous cleanliness shall be maintained in this area.

8.            Dry sweeping in this area is prohibited.  Any spillage of asbestos shall be cleaned by vacuum cleaning only.

9.            A sack or container contaminated with asbestos shall not be cleaned by hand and is to be disposed off by an appropriate method.

10.         All protective equipments and clothing shall be re-dusted by vacuum cleaning and stored in an appropriate place provided for the purpose.

11.         Entry of unauthorized persons or authorized persons without proper protective equipments is prohibited.

12.         Report for the prescribed medical examinations and tests regularly to protect your own health.

13.         Report to your doctor immediately if you suffer from persistent breathlessness, chest tightness, or cough.