Full registration only $299

Shalinda Shafie,
MSc Occupational & Environmental Hygiene - UBC

Session Synopsis: Study on the Use of Dust-Extraction Vacuums in the BC Construction Industry

Vacuums are widely employed in the construction industry as one of the key control methods for silica dust. Workers rely on their optimal performance to protect themselves from this invisible hazard. However, studies on the performance of vacuums in the field has been limited. In this presentation, we will discuss the different factors that affect the performance of a vacuum system such as on the type and configuration of vacuum, the frequency of maintenance as well as the work-practices of the person using the vacuum.

We will also share practical information and answer common questions from both operators of vacuums and safety personnel regarding vacuum selection and maintenance and discuss how proper handling of vacuums can reduce harmful exposures to the operator and others. We expect to demonstrate new training tools aimed at improving vacuum use on BC construction sites.


Shalinda has a BE in Environmental Engineering from the University of New South Wales, Australia and has worked for six years in the Malaysian petrochemical industry as a health and safety professional. She is currently working towards a MSc in Occupational and Environmental Hygiene at the University of British Columbia. Her research thesis involves characterizing vacuum dust extraction use on BC construction sites as well as studying design and use factors that influence vacuum performance.

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