eTools Home : Shipyard Employment Scope | Glossary | Additional Resources | Credits
Shipyard Employment eTool: Shipbreaking
General Requirements Shipbuilding Ship Repair Shipbreaking Barge Cleaning

General Working Conditions » Health and Sanitation


PFigure 1: PPE disposal barrel and hand wipe station
Figure 1: PPE disposal barrel and hand wipe station.

Appropriate controls must be implemented to prevent workers from being exposed to biological or chemical materials.

To prevent exposure, workers must be provided with protective clothing and washing facilities, and be prohibited from eating, drinking, or smoking in contaminated areas.



Health and Sanitation
Figure 2: Warning sign - No eating, drinking or smoking
Figure 2: Warning sign - No eating, drinking or smoking.

Figure 3: Sanitation sign posted in change room
Figure 3: Sanitation sign posted in change room.
Potential Hazards:

Worker illness and injury can be caused by exposure to hazardous materials such as garbage, sewage, and toxic chemicals. Requirements and Example Solutions:

  • Engineering controls and suitable PPE for the identified hazards must be provided for workers. [29 CFR 1915.97(a)]
  • Adequate washing facilities must be provided for workers exposed to hazardous materials. [29 CFR 1915.97(b)]
  • Workers must maintain good personal hygiene. [29 CFR 1915.97(b)]
  • Eating or smoking is not permitted in areas with atmospheric contaminates. [29 CFR 1915.97(c)]
  • Minors under 18 years of age must not be employed in shipbreaking or related employments. [29 CFR 1915.97(e)]

Note: Employers must have a Hazard Communication Program in accordance with 29 CFR 1915.1200.

Back to Top Back to Top


Biological Hazards
Figure 4: CHT Tank
Figure 4: CHT Tank.

Figure 5: Washing facilities
Figure 5: Washing facilities.

Potential Hazards:

Some operations expose employees to biological hazards from sewage and human waste, fungi and molds, and decomposing organic products.

  • Collection, holding, and transfer (CHT) tanks, which workers are often required to enter, may contain dangerous, even fatal, levels of hydrogen sulfide or other toxic gases, which are products of decomposing human waste.
  • Toxic spores inhaled from fungi and molds growing on grain and lumber may pose an inhalation hazard.

Requirements and Example Solutions:

  • Employees shall be trained to recognize the potential hazards, use proper work practices, recognize adverse health effects, and understand the physical signs and reactions related to exposures. They shall also be trained to select and use appropriate PPE. [29 CFR 1915.12(d)(2) and 29 CFR 1915.1200]
  • Personal hygiene is required. [29 CFR 1915.97] This includes the following:
    • Decontamination (removal of biological matter from PPE and equipment).
    • Showers (removal of biological matter from the worker). [29 CFR 1910.141]
    • Proper disposal of laundry and coveralls (prevention of exposure to others).

Additional Resources:

Back to Top Back to Top


eTools Home : Shipyard Employment Scope | Glossary | Additional Resources | Credits